9 Weeks Post Neck/Face Lift: Neck is Starting to Sag

Nine Weeks Post Neck/face Lift with Undermining and Submental Incision, my Neck Skin is Starting to Sag and Creep. Does the neck skin tighten over time (next 6-12 months of healing) or become more lax? What has been your experience?

Doctor Answers 20

Neck is Starting to Sag

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I notice you say you had a submental incision with undermining, skin I presume. here's a general rule, skin cannot hold tension. if your infrastructure of your neck (muscle, fat, glands, etc.) is saggy then no amount of skin undermining or tightening will give you a long lasting youthful neck. Of course an exam would be critical to determine why your neck "sags", but dollars to doughnuts you need more done...again....correctly. good luck

Boca Raton Plastic Surgeon

Skin Relaxation after Facelift

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Although the majority of the swelling after facelifting resolves after a few weeks, the remainder will resolve over three to six months. During this time you may notice fullness in some areas, and relaxation in others. There is alot of healing that takes place under the skin as well. For this reason you will notice fluctuations as well. Be patient, feel free to discuss your concerns with your doctor, as I am sure they are as concerned about the final result as you are.

Brian Maloney, MD, FACS
Atlanta Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 35 reviews

Neck Skin After Facelift

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Great question!

The neck skin is initially fairly tight after facelift.  Over the next several weeks, the skin does relax a bit, but then tightens up as the collagen/scar tissue contracts.  This process takes about 1 year to complete, though the majority of the healing takes place in the first 6 months. The final result of a facelift depends on many factors:

  • Age
  • Smoking
  • History of excessive sun exposure
  • History of professional skin care

Take care of your skin with ritual sunscreen use, exfoliation with chemical peels, lasers or microdermabrasion and avoidance of tobacco use to yield the best and longest-lasting facelift results!

Andrew Winkler, MD
Lone Tree Facial Plastic Surgeon

Sagging Skin 9 weeks after a Facelift

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Sagging skin 9 weeks later can mean many things.  You probably aren't going to have significant tightening after 9 weeks.  The most helpful thing to do is review your before and after pictures and see if you made any progress from you were before your procedure.

There is a saying that after plastic surgery, or vision gets better, and our memory gets worse!  We start to see and notice things we never saw before, and no one can remember what they used to look like.  That is why pictures are so valuable.

You will always have some laxity - if you don't have laxity the result won't look natural.  If you have excess laxity, you might require a touchup or an larger procedure that what you originally chose.  Most facelifts fall into the general category of either a small, medium, or large lift.  Watch the attached video to learn more.

The most important decision you make is the artist/surgeon that you choose - please let us know if you have any additional questions!

Richard Castellano, MD
Tampa Facial Plastic Surgeon

Facelift Longevity: Relapse after 9 weeks not a good sign.

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If your facelift is failing after 9 weeks it is likely the tension was placed on the skin instead of the undersurface of the face or SMAS. The skin is like a rubber band and will rebound without the chance of re-tightening. This is common for the easy and minimal facelift techniques. You may be looking at a secondary facelift in the future. Sorry. Dr. Trussler

Andrew P. Trussler, MD
Austin Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 52 reviews

Usually recovery from facelift and neck lift

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It appears that the early post operative swelling is subsiding, and you are noticing a bit more laxity in the neck. I doubt the results of your facelift will change greatly in the next 4 months. The best recommendation I can make is for you to discuss your concerns with your surgeon. I believe with passage of more time you will become more comfortable with your results

Maurice M. Khosh, MD
New York Facial Plastic Surgeon

Face Lift Recovery

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The recovery from a facelift is quite variable, with the most important consideration being the quality of your skin before surgery. Your results will evolve over the first six months and I recommend that you wait at least that amount of time to assess your results.  Consult with your surgeon at that time if you have concerns.  You may for instance benefit from laser resurfacing at that later date.  Good luck.

David Stoker, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 62 reviews

9 Weeks Post Lift - Neck is Starting to Sag

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Some level of sagging and settling is normal after surgery and the extent of this depends on the condition of the skin before surgery.

Sam Naficy, MD, FACS
Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 231 reviews

Facelift surgery turns the clock back, but it does not stop it!

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During every pre-surgery office visit for rejuvenation surgery, I talk to my patients about what to expect immediately after surgery, as well as what to expect once the healing is complete. All patients need to know about the phases of tissue healing: early swelling, followed by stiffness, which gradually softens to a natural feel, over about 90 days after surgery. After all the healing is done, every one will notice some laxity. This represents the true, end result of the surgery. Often, it is at this time that I recommend laser skin resurfacing  with a fractionated Carbon Dioxide laser to repair and minimally tighten the skin envelope. Depending on the person's age, some of the new skin-tightening systems may be beneficial.

Edward Szachowicz, MD, PhD
Minneapolis Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 14 reviews

Neck skin will not tighten further 9 weeks after Facelift and Neck Lift

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I am sorry to say that your neck skin will not likely tighten further after 9 weeks post Facelift and Neck Lift.

Discuss your disappointment with your surgeon.

Often a small revision of the neck skin and muscle through the small incision under your chin can fix the problem and most reputable surgeons are as invested in a good result and your happiness as you are

Sometimes no matter how well the Neck Lift was done, the skin can become lax after a couple of months.

Usually a small revision fixes the problem and most Plastic Surgeons do not charge for this if you followed all post op instructions and did nothing to cause the problem to happen.

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.