Face Lift / Neck Lift & Eyes - Costa Rica

For the last ten years I have wanted to eliminate...

For the last ten years I have wanted to eliminate my turkey neck to which I am extremely self conscious, and I now realize that at the age of 55 I need the full works.. a lower facelift and upper & lower blepharoplasty, accompanied by some kind of skin rejuvenation.
I had two consultations in Houston, TX
The first was with Dr Vitenas. My consultation with him felt very rushed, and I found him to be a little arrogant.
My second consultation was with Dr Mentz. He was absolutely great. He took his time and explained everything in great detail. I felt totally comfortable with him. He is also triple board certified and I would have had no hesitation in having Dr Mentz perform my surgery but I was quoted over $20,000 which was way out of my price range.
I then discovered this website and read numerous positive articles about Dr Lev in Costa Rica. I studied his website and the whole senario just felt right.
I have scheduled my surgery for September 14th 2015 with Dr Lev and I will be staying at Chi Tica Ranch.
I intend to share my whole experience with my RS family, from raising funds to informative pictures of food, accommodation, and of course..my surgery.

Financial and contact emails..

I will explain the breakdown of my total cost of $6,600
Dr Lev is charging $4,000 for my FL, NL and eyes.
Dr Silvia Rubinstein (who works closely with Dr Lev) is charging $600 for the chemical peel around my mouth which includes my top lip. She will be present at the clinic and perform the peel once Dr Lev has completed the surgery.
I decided to have my surgery at the clinic at a cost of $2000 Reviews of the clinic are very good. If I had the surgery at the local hospital it would be $2000 extra.
I liaised with Dr Levs assistant named Didi.. She is very knowledgeable and friendly, and always answers emails and questions within 24 hours or less.
(Her FL was also performed by Dr Lev). There is no extra charge for her assistance.
Her email address is ******@gmail.com
I previously mentioned that I am going to stay at Che Tica Ranch for two weeks after my surgery. The cost is $100 per night, which includes 3 fresh and healthy meals per day, nursing care, and trips to the doctors and airport. Ruben is the owner and is also very friendly. I am a vegetarian, and he has assured me that this is no problem. They cater for all types of diets. Rubens email address is ********@gmail.com
(Dr Lev also performed his wife Lorena's FL)
On 8/14 I have my pre-surgery blood work done. Dr Lev requires 9 blood tests that have to be performed within 1 month of surgery. I am going to a place named Travelvax and the total cost is $180 which is much cheaper than going to a doctor as I was quoted nearly $600
Because of my age, Dr Lev requires that I have an EKG which is another $70
I forgot to mention that Dr Lev only performs one surgery per day which was a plus in my decision making.

Front view 6 weeks before surgery

Surgery is over - time to report!!

My flight from Houston to Costa Rica was about 3 hours.. Once I walked out of the airport and saw a beautiful lady looking at me and smiling from ear to ear, holding a sign with my name on it, I knew instantly that it was Lorena from CheTica Ranch Recovery Center and that I had definitely chosen the right place to convalesce - I felt an instant likeness for her, and was suddenly very excited knowing that I would be in competent hands.
The car journey from San Jose Airport to CheTica Ranch was about 30 minutes.
On my arrival at the ranch, I was greeted by France's - my nurse and a gentleman that carried my luggage into my villa.
The following are some before pictures.

Day of Surgery..

Lorena and I left around 6.30am to go to the clinic for my procedure. The clinic is a small building wrapped in barbed wire (as most buildings are) and is situated on a busy street.
I would describe the inside of the clinic as basic but very clean and tidy. After completing the official paperwork, I said goodbye to Lorena, and was taken to a little room to change into a hospital type gown. All my clothes and belongings were placed inside a locker.
I sat patiently for about 5 minutes, until a young nurse entered and walked me into another little room where I lay on a bed and was introduced to Dr Greenwood.
Dr Greenwood was the anesthesiologist, he was very talkative and I felt very comfortable with him. We discussed my health, and before I knew it, I was being wheeled into the operating room and had suddenly fallen into a deep sleep!
I have absolutely no idea what time I awoke, but I was extremely thirsty, so the nurse fed me a little juice box.. She was constantly in the room, laying on a bed beside mine. I felt no pain at all.
Early the next morning Lorena collected me and took me back to the ranch. I still felt absolutely no pain - just uncomfortable due to the thick bandage that felt very tight, but the tightness was apparently from my muscles being tightened from surgery - not the bandage.
A massive smile of excitement kept appearing on my face because I suddenly realized that I'd finally had my procedure... YAY!!

Day By Day Pictures..

They say that a picture is worth a thousand words, so I've attached profile pictures from day 2 through to day 14.
I will describe my stay at CheTica Ranch Recovery Center and the adorable and talented Dr Alejandro Lev in my next chapter..

What a Difference!!

Pictures too Small

Tonight, I will upload the pictures again in a larger size..

Dr Alejandro Lev

Dr Lev is a Brazillian trained plastic surgeon in Costa Rica who is known as the "Doctors Doctor" he has a pristine reputation and is genuinely a lovely person. On researching Dr Lev, I found that numerous patients all gave him positive reviews. I studied his before and after photographs, and realized that his work was just amazing.
He only performs one surgery per day, which was a plus in my decision making, and he has partnered with Dr Greenwood (his anesthesiologist) for many years.
I would not hesitate to recommend Dr Lev - he is truly a gifted surgeon.

CheTica Ranch Recovery Center

CheTica Ranch is situated about 30 minutes from San Jose Town Center. It oversees more than 80 acres of tropical flowers, fruits in a tranquil forest - at 5000 ft above sea level.
My new private villa was fully equipped with wifi, cable TV/DVD, coffee maker, fridge, and microwave.
My towels were changed everyday, and my room was cleaned everyday.
I loved to sit on the patio and watch the sheep and horses grazing peacefully. I was offered 3 delicious home made meals per day which included tropical fruits and juices. I am a vegetarian, and this was not a problem.. Lorena even made me vegetarian lasagne which was excellent. I ate fish, fresh fruits and vegetables most days.
Lorena's husband Ruben cooks a famous BBQ every Saturday, and offered me vegetable kebabs.
All car rides to Dr Lev and the airport were free of charge.
Did I mention that Lorena had a facelift last year? It was performed by Dr Lev..
Francis is the resident nurse. She is a very lovely lady that obviously cares deeply about her patients. She speaks very good English, and is very competent in what she does. She is on call 24/7 and has been working at CheTica Ranch for 12 years.
Once again, I would not hesitate in recommending CheTica Ranch. I thoroughly enjoyed my 14 day stay there, and was very sad to leave. Lorena and Rubens hospitality was A+

Dr Levs Coordinator - Didi

Didi is a beautiful lady that is based In the U.S. and coordinates Dr Levs patients that live outside of Costa Rica.
She is very quick in replying to your emails etc and very friendly and helpful. Her services are free of charge.
Did I mention that she had a facelift? It was performed by Dr Lev.. Her facelift journey can be seen on Dr Levs website.
Costa Rica Plastic Surgeon

An all round excellent doctor that I would not hesitate in recommending.

5 out of 5 stars Overall rating
5 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
5 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
5 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
5 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
5 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
5 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
5 out of 5 stars Payment process
5 out of 5 stars Wait times
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