4 Weeks Post-op Facelift--left Side Doing Well--right Side Has Huge Lump Behind Right Ear. Will It Heal?

behind ear lobe. Also neck is quite wrinkled and hard& still shows where the drainage tube was. Massaging has been done twice daily. Wrinkle in front of rt. earlobe which dr. may have to fix. My neck does not look good and have been wearing turtlenecks in hopes it will improve.Looks like a facelift for sure on rt. side. Will these go away and how long must I wear turtlenecks? Thank you!

Doctor Answers 7

Facelift healing progress

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Unfortunately, many mass marketing cosmetic companies have peppered the airwaves with commercials advertising amazing facelift results with little to no down time. Unfortunately, this is completely false. A facelift if a very effective procedure that can produce fantastic results. In order to achieve these results there is a lot dissection in the face as well as the neck. The muscle layer of the face is manipulated and anchored in order to provide the strength of the lift. The result of the surgical manipulation is a lot of swelling that can require several month to completely resolve.

I advise my patients that they can usually transition back to their daily routine after 10-14 days as long as they avoid strenuous activity and heavy lifting. I also advise that there may be areas of swelling that can take a few months to heal. I would visit with your surgeon, show him/her the areas that you are concerned about. I would anticipate that you will have a full recovery with great results but it takes time.

Newport Beach Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 34 reviews

I am so sorry to learn that you are having issues after your facelift.

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A facelift covers a lot of territory.  Healing does take many months.  Typically the face goes through healing process that can make the tissue under the skin feel lump bumpy.  This will be at its worst 6-8 weeks after surgery.  After that things do soften.  It is not unusual for the problems you are describing to soften and be much less dramatic as time passes.  Even wrinkles that look like they may need touch up surgery can soften and disappear with time.  That may not speed up the process but it doe sound like your surgeon is closely following you and often there is nothing like the tincture of time.

Kenneth D. Steinsapir, MD
Beverly Hills Oculoplastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 26 reviews

4 weeks post-op

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It is very difficult to answer your question without seeing your pictures but 4 weeks is still relatively early in healing process after your surgery.  There are still irritated nerves and tight muscles.  Be patient and continue to follow up with your surgeon as directed.



Sam Naficy, MD, FACS
Seattle Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 229 reviews

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4 Weeks Post-op Facelift--left Side Doing Well--right Side Has Huge Lump Behind Right Ear. Will It Hea

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One can have such scenarios if there was more of a blood collection on one side versus the other. The blood can cause the tissues to become stiff and indurated. Usually with time and massage, that will get better. We also use an ultrasonic physical therapy massage machine and find that helps quite a bit.

Julio Garcia, MD
Las Vegas Plastic Surgeon
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Healing Process

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Sounds like you may have a problem that will need revision. You need to wait at least 6 months before going back to do revision work.


Scars must mature and swelling must decrease after a facelift.

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Scars must mature and swelling must decrease after a facelift before you can see the full result.  Having said that, things should be looking significantly improved by one month -- at least things should be looking symmetric.

Make sure you keep returning to your physician to be given directions on healing.

Richard H. Fryer, MD
Salt Lake City Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 293 reviews

Firm areas after a facelift will usually resolve

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The complete healing process following most facelifts progresses over several months.  While most of  the obvious bruising and swelling should dissipate after two to three weeks, it is not unusual to have areas which are firm and somewhat bumpy for a longer period.  Massage does help these areas to improve faster, sometimes it is helpful to use localized steroid injections.  Close follow up with your surgeon should help obtain the fastest resolution.

Mark Beaty, MD
Atlanta Facial Plastic Surgeon
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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.