52, Neck and Jowls Making Me Look Older - Richmond, VA

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This is more of a question than a review. I have...

This is more of a question than a review. I have the option of having being fully under during surgery rather than sedation and shots to numb the area. The cost between the 2 options are $2,000 difference. I am afraid of hearing things, seeing instruments and dying of fright on the table, is sedation really a painless way to go? I would welcome your experience of those who were brave enough to go with sedation and numbing shots only.

Thank you

The date is set and I'm going under!

I have the date set for my neck and lower face lift. Actually my husband wanted me to do it the end of the summer but I have a Boxer dog who has cancer and I need him with me after surgery, he has been there for me lying right next to me for days on end during eye surgery, knee surgery and breast implant surgery so I have scheduled it for July 8th, I pray he can make it to that day. I really need him there. I have decided to do the surgery with full anesthesia even with the extra cost I feel it's worth it. I will upload pictures very soon. Thanks everyone for the advice I was too afraid of sneezing or coughing at a crucial time!

Photos, Oh why can't a camera lie for once!

Well, I finally took the pictures that I did not want to see so I apologize that you have to look at them also. I can't believe my husband says he can't see what I'm talking about, time for a vision check for him! After taking these pictures I am 100% sure I am doing the right thing. I notice my eyes are baggy when I smile, I had a lower blephoplasty done almost 4 years ago. My Doctor says he is going to make an incision about 1/2 inch above my ear and 1/2 inch into the hair to pull the skin back over my cheekbone which will alleviate some of the wrinkles. I am also having a neck lift and lower face lift. I may have collagen injected into my upper lip. I asked my doctor about fat transfer and he said he does not like fat transfer into the face as if you gain weight the fat cells don't know they are in your face and gain weight along with every other fat cell. I have read about this and even other Doctors on this sight say the same thing so I will stay away from fat transfer. I have posted a picture of my non existent eyebrows if it were not for my faithful pencil, I am having them tattooed on by Lynn Smith of Lynn Smith Studios in Charlottesville, an hour or so from Richmond. I could not find a place in Richmond that had great reviews so I will travel. I will post pictures of new eyebrows when I get them. My appointment is May 23rd. My husband and I are off to Mexico this weekend for a 2 week vacation we figured we should go now as no sun for a while after surgery. Have a wonderful 2 weeks everyone. Bye for now.

Husband meltdown

OMG my husband had a complete meltdown last night over my up coming surgery. He is paranoid that I will look so different and not look like the person he fell in love with (and still is I may add). He has concerns about so many things such as 1. dying under anesthesia (this is what I chose to do at an extra cost) 2. skin narcosis as I am an ex smoker (quit 2 years ago) 3. looking like I came out of a wind tunnel 4. sleeping apart for 14 days (my choice) and the list goes on and on. Has anyone else had a husband meltdown if so I need help how to handle/talk to him, right now I feel like I need to cancel surgery as I did not realize my choice was causing him so much stress and concern. Any comments on how to handle this would be appreciated

Adding a brow lift to procedure

After another consultation with my Doctor (1.15 minutes as he explains everything in great detail and never makes you feel like you are asking way to many questions) I have decided to also add a brow lift to my LF/NL. I was concerned that maybe 3 years from having lower face done, upper face would not match and I would have to have a brow lift then, so why not do it all now and get it over with. My Surgeon makes his incisions in the scalp, not at the hair line and uses staples instead of stiches so there is no hair damage and no hairline scars. I like that. I gave my husband the option of coming yesterday to the consultation, he declined. I have made my decision this is for me and I have every confidence in Dr. DeWire and I am going forward with surgery and I will be gentle and kind to my husbands feelings but stay focused on my goal no matter what he says.

No eyebrow tattoo yet

I had to cancel my eyebrow tattoo due to brow lift being added. I will get it done later in the year.

Count down begins

I had yet another visit to Dr. De Wire yesterday so ask about Arnica Montana as a lot of people on hear say they took it to help with bruising. He said not to take it. I asked about silicone gel, he said just use a small amount of Vaseline. I asked about an endoscopic BL not the coronal, he said the results would not be the same and he wont do endoscopic, so coronal it is. That is the only part that scares me the ear to ear incision. This weekend is my shopping weekend for all food supplies and baby items I will be buying... spoon and a sippy cup. I will be taking at least 3 weeks off work (I work for myself so am able to do so) so I will hit Goodwill also to buy lots of books! I can not change the price on my review heading and people private message me about the price being so cheap. This is a breakdown of charges. FL/NL/BL $8,000.00 Juvederm in lips $675.00. Operating room charges $2,450.00. Total $11,125.00 that does not include the Anesthesiologist fees I pay directly to the company.

Brow creases and slightly heavy eyes hopefully eliminated

Couple of pictures of the hard creases I have in my brow and heavy eyelids which I did not notice until the Dr. pointed them out. The brow lift should eliminate both problems.... hopefully. 2 weeks to surgery. Taking the dog with me, Maybe Dr. DW can help him also!!!!

Oh boy the clock is ticking down

Had a great weekend with hubby, played putt putt golf, went for a fantastic dinner and on to an outside bar where they have live music and danced a bit. Going to be a while before we do that again. Did grocery shopping for lots of soft foods, low in sodium, mainly ended up with yoghurt, chocolate pudding, soup and some kung pow noodle bowls, little higher in sodium than I would have liked but figured I would try one and see what happens. Emotions are running high right now, trying to talk to myself every time I get a panic moment. I have discussed with myself, yes , me, myself and I have had some serious conversations! we discussed what is the worst things to expect, such as bruising, blues, pain, not sleeping and a hard time eating but we decided that after all its only temporary and we can get through it. especially with a little help from our friends on RS.
I bought a lazy husband which I hope will help with the upright sleeping position along with an airplane neck rest to keep my neck from falling sideways. I turned the guest room into my recovery room as I will sadly sleep alone until at least the stitches are removed. My wonderful Mother-in-law comes the day of surgery armed with meals for her son and lots of TLC for me and walks for the dog. My husband took these pictures the other night before we went out on our date night so I thought I would post these. I will post the day after surgery as with full anesthesia I may not be good for much on Wednesday.

Day 1, 2 and 3

Day 1, Surgery was at 8. I arrived at 7.15 meet with Dr Dewire, OR nurse and Anesthesiologist. PS did not draw on my face as per other peoples experience. I had an IV of fluids, and of course changed into the pretty useless gown, paper socks and hat, kissed my husband and walked to the OR. Lots of things going on in there then a mask over my mouth and nothing.... till 4 hours later, I was fully under and have no recollection of anything until my husband was telling me to wake up. I do not remember being dressed or the 15 minute drive home. I remember getting into bed and I slept for about 2 more hours. Woke up felt good no nausea. Ate some soup, drank lots of water watched TV then tried to sleep. Difficult, woke up many times and was restless, no pain just discomfort. Woke up to a bruised neck, a swollen face and bruises under eyes. Went for early morning check up and PS removed bandage, I did not have any drains PS rarely uses them this is one of the things I really liked. PS said everything looked ok and to go back on Monday for stitch removal, staples will stay in until Wednesday. Rested most of yesterday, but shower felt good although I had to wash my hair 3 times to get the blood out. Cleaned my incisions with diluted peroxide and them coated stiches around ears with Vaseline. I did not do anything to the incision in my head from the brow lift, just let the water fro my shower clean them. Last night I took sleeping pills, right ear is bothering me and my face feels like it's going to explode from swelling, it's worse on the left side than the right. I have been using cold compresses on my face, neck and ears along with bags of peas. I am not taking any pain meds. Drinking water is easy and I don't have any trouble eating. Hopefully swelling will begin to go down tomorrow.

Face itching

OMG my face, neck and head periodically itches like crazy, is this a good sign?

Day 4,5 and part of 6

Thank you all for the advice on the itching. Day 4 was a small emotional rollercoaster, my wonderful Mother in Law left to go home and my husband was left in charge, he did really good and waited on me hand and foot! My MIL had a car accident on the way home from taking care of me, luckily she was not hurt, just burned on her hands from the air bag deploying but I would never have forgiven myself if the accident had a different outcome. I must share this re: sleeping. I purchased a lazy husband which has good back support and I also add pillows on it and around it so sleeping sitting up is pretty easy but the best thing is the airplane pillow I do not put it around my neck as it hurts my ears but I put one end under my chin so my chin stays upright. I move this thing around with me all night and use it in many different ways. Day 5 bruising was still dark under my eyes but swelling has gone down from under them. Behind right ear I feel a pulling sensation and under chin/neck and sides of face area is still very numb. I took a long bubble bath and a much needed leg shave which I couldn't do in the shower yesterday afternoon and felt much better. Today I vow to stay out of nightwear during the day and put on pretty clothes. I have been getting up with a strange feeling to my head, like it's "swimming" this has lasted for about 2 hours for the past 3 mornings. I go to get some stiches and or staples removed today so I will ask Dr. about this. I have to drive myself to the Doctors so I hope the traffic is light.

Rest of day 6

To everyone who is giving me encouragement thank you from the bottom of my heart. Yesterday was a pretty low day and the first day I had real regret about doing this as my face has changed shape, more wider at the cheek bones and I don't look like me. I made it to the PS office, I asked him about the swimming sensation and he told me to stop taking the pain meds (which I was doing at midnight to make me sleep) I got up this morning with no swimming so he was right on the problem causing it. He took out every other staple in my head which hurt a little and removed the stitches in front of my ears. The right top of my ear has not attached properly yet (there are stitches inside as well as outside evidently) so it was bleeding he said to just let it scab over.... nice. I asked him about the width of my face he said it was because he pulled the lost fat from my cheeks back over the cheek bones. I guess I will have to try to find some pictures of me in my 30's to see if I had a wider face than I remember. He also said he did lipo under my neck on the left side which was my worse side that was why I have dark red splotches under my neck. I have developed a cough in the past 3 days which after research it appears it's to do with having the breathing tube in my lungs as I went fully under, I keep coughing up mucus I will ask him about this tomorrow when I return to get the rest of stitches and staples out. I ordered Arnica gel yesterday from Amazon and paid for it to be overnighted I am hoping this will help with my black eyes. Sleeping upright is causing my lower back to really bother me as I have existing hip and spine problems. I am going to try to keep myself busy cleaning out paperwork in my office today and not looking in the mirror. Hopefully today will be a better day emotionally. I hope everyone else is hanging in there.

In the words of Cher...

"If I could turn back time" right now hell yes. Not only did I have a severe tummy upset last night but my cough is not from the tube I have the flu. This is all too much and Gods way of telling me you should have left my creation alone. Went to PS today had the rest of the staples removed and the stiches, my ears have separated at various points at the back, he said not to worry let nature do it's thing, keep them clean and use Vaseline. He then told me that he was sick a couple of weeks ago and still has the residual cough, so I guess I know where I got it from. Laid in bed most of the day, I am very weak and have a slight fever. Hubby is on his way home but it takes him 2 hours on a good day I am off to shower and do the best I can with what I have at this point in time.
I hope everyone else is doing well today.

Trip to the ER

Hi everyone, thank you all for your encouragement and kind words it really means a lot to have so many wonderful people caring about practically a stranger, but those people still find time in their own lives to consider other people and give encouragement and comfort.

I had a really bad Wednesday night with terrible coughing and then by early morning a hard time breathing and pain in my left chest. My husband left for work at 4.45 am and I almost asked him to stay home but we agreed that I was to call my GP's office at 7.00 to try to get an appointment. I called and spoke to my Doctors nurse. At 7.40 my GP called me to tell me to go to the emergency room as she did not like my symptoms as I have a history of DVT's and she was afraid it could be a clot on my lung. My husband left work but it takes him 2 hours to get home, My MIL is back home and we have no other family between us .(no kids, deceased other parents, no siblings) We got to the ER @ 10.00 am. After a CT scan I was diagnosed with pneumonia which was a lot better than a blood clot. The Doctor said, but would not commit to, that it may have been caused by the breathing tube as my strain of pneumonia is bacterial not viral. After picking up meds, and getting home around 1.30 I slept most of the rest of the day and night. I have noticed quite a decrease in swelling in my face the past 24 hours, although my neck is pretty swollen. Behind my ears I clean often with peroxide and keep moist with Vaseline. The right side of my scalp has healed well but the left side has a ridge in it, a real step from the back to the front and a space in between. I have a couple of concerns I want to address with my PS next week. My scar under my chin is quite bumpy can anyone give me some advice on what to do, massage maybe? cream maybe? This is turning into a rough journey, but hopefully things will turn around soon.

Decided to put on make up

After so many wonderful comments and encouragement, kind words and advice, I gave myself a real good talking to, got my butt in the shower got out the make up the mouse and hairspray and went to town, took me a while to dry my hair on cold, but hubby just came home and was very happy with my effort. I will do this everyday from now on it's time to get some normality into my life.

one more picture

Every day gets better

Less than a week ago I had so many regrets. Now I am very happy as my body heals it self strangely overnight, I go to bed with some lump and in the morning it's gone, or the ridge in my head which is getting smaller by the half day, the body truly is a fascinating piece of nature. Under my eyes are still bruised , but a couple more days and that will be gone to. My ears are fully attached now and the separation at the back of my ears has joined together. (I still use Vaseline throughout the day) I had planned on taking one month off work but feel I could go back next Monday. I have to be careful though as I actually clean houses for a living and it is very physical work. I will decide on Friday if I'm ready or not, although I could honestly get used to staying at home and become a lady of leisure! I will post a few pictures when my eyes have completely healed. I went to Ulta yesterday and the wonderful lady there helped me buy all new make up and showed me how to do my eyes differently than I have been, and how to apply eyebrows using a stencil so I have been practicing that today. I hope everyone is doing great and enjoying life today.

Tea Tree Oil

has anyone tried Tea Tree oil, diluted of course, to treat scars? if so what are your comments.

First night of real sleep

I decided it was time to get rid of the lazy husband last night and cuddle up to the real one (who is anything but lazy) last night. It was very strange to lie flat and I had to position myself just right onto the pillows as my ears are still a little tender. I was worried that squishing my face into the pillow as I am usually a side or stomach sleeper would distort my face and I would wake up looking like Frankenstein or some one similar. Thankfully nothing was different when I got up and I had no swelling anywhere. I slept great once I got comfortable, a whole 12 hours! boy I feel good today. I have to go for an eye exam today so just got ready and thought I would post a couple of pictures. I have a strange 2 inch piece of skin on the left side of my neck which is puckering and red/purple and tender to the touch, I wondered if I burst a blood vessel from all the coughing last week. I will see PS on Monday and ask. I hope everyone is doing well today and RG your staples are long gone by now!

Forgot a smile

Ok to live normal again

Went to PS today, he is happy with the healing process but told me as the nerves in my head ran front to back (evidently some peoples run back to front) I will always be numb over a large portion of the top of my head, not just a little spot like some people. I feel like I'm blow drying a wig as I can't feel anything up there. My "puckered patch" on my neck has to be massaged as do the rest of my neck to smooth out the little bit of lumpiness I have. I can go back to the gym now although not full force, just short and gentle, but I'll take that. I can get my hair colored YEA, and sadly go back to work tomorrow. I have been lying flat for several days now and have no swelling in the morning. I am adding salt and drinking alcohol and having no re-actions to either. All the bruising is completely gone now and all this in less than 3 weeks. Sometimes I was not sure I was going to make it, but my body did and my mind overcame and so many wonderful people on RS gave so much encouragement, advice and caring words. My journey is pretty much done here I will post some final pictures in a couple of days after I get my hair colored! I wish everyone who has, is or will be travelling on their own journey best wishes and may everything your PS does turn out just perfect.

5 weeks later

Today is 5 weeks from my surgery. I still have a large numb area on the top of my head and the scar in my head is still sore especially about 1 inch above the ears. The right side of my head has healed really well, you can not even see the scar but the left side still has a ridge in it like it never fully joined together, it does not hurt I can just feel the height difference when I run my hands through my hair.

I have pretty much all my feeling back in front of my right ear, but still numb on the left side. My scar under my chin is a little lumpy, I do massage it, but I think Mother Nature is the only thing that can help now.

I still have an area of puckered skin on my neck as shown in some of my later pictures. If I lift my head too far, my neck under my chin puckers. PS did say that he took a fair amount of skin and fat from under it and made it as tight as he could. He also said that I have large salivary glands, especially on my left side so it will look like a slight lump there at all times. He is right, and I can really feel a lump there the size of a mini golf ball if I push a little.

I honestly feel that my skin could have been a little tighter in the jowl area, especially again on the left side. Also my forehead lines are still noticeable now that all the swelling has subsided. I had Botox put in them yesterday.

People say they see a difference, but only a slight one. I don't see as much difference as I would have liked. I'm not unhappy with my results but I am a little disappointed with my jowl area but I think any tighter would have distorted my face too much and changed the shape completely. So all in all, it's good. Here are a couple of pics taken at not quite 4 weeks.

Photos did not upload, trying again

little closer

3 month update

I can't believe it has been 3 months, time flies. Most of my sensations are back. I am still numb right in front of both ears and a small area on the top of my head. Overall I'm about 50% happy, not a good percentage for almost $12,000.00 I think I could have been pulled a little tighter everywhere and I have these lines under my neck which look like three small turkey waddles. They are noticeable at every angle and get worse if I look up. I will be talking about a re-do on my neck when I see Dr. Dewire for my 3 month check up which has been postponed by him as he is out of town right now. I would like to see if, as a returning patient of his my re-do will be free. I won't hold my breath on that.

Neck revision scheduled for February

I am not happy with my neck, as I said before. After a visit to the Doctor we are doing a revision. He will go in through chin scar and hopefully fix the loose skin that I still have and address the muscle that is pulling when I look up. I will keep you posted closer to the date.

Re: Neck revision is needed.

Almost 7 months. I have the same issue with my neck that I started with albeit a little smaller, and I have, what I call pleating skin (see pictures above from 3 months ago) After a visit to the PS 2 months ago, he said he could fix it by re-opening the incision under my neck and re-draping the skin, but wanted me to wait to do the revision. At my visit on Monday, he said the desired results I wanted would need incisions behind the ears to correct it and he wants to charge me $2,400 to do it. The $500 under then chin first option he gave me appears now that it wont fix the issue. I was also informed that he is retiring in May. My decision is; yes I will have a neck revision but with another Dr. It is obvious that he did not take enough skin the first time around, he even told my husband right after surgery that he went as tight as he thought he could but my salivary gland on my left side is very prominent and he did not want it to stick out. It is very obvious not enough skin was tightened the first time around and I will be finding another surgeon to fix the problem in the very near future.

Re: Extreme dissappointment, need revision of everything

I am so distraught with my neck the main reason for surgery was to get rid of my turkey neck which was what bothered me the most. As I WILL NOT give Dr. De Wire any more of my $$$ especially as he is denying there is anything wrong with my neck, see my pictures.... people go in for surgery with a neck that looks like this not 7 months later have a neck after surgery that looks like mine. When I saw him last he said there was nothing wrong with my neck and the little bit of skin was because I was an ex smoker. Bullshit

I went to see another PS at Richmond Plastic Surgery for a consultation and he could not believe what my neck looks like after such a short time, he agreed it was not skin laxity due to the fact that I am an EX smoker (quit years ago) but a very poor attempt at a neck lift. Dr. De Wire is also known in the PS field as the Boob Doctor, he is not known for Facelifts, in fact the PS said he has done several revisions of work that D.r De Wire has done on faces and necks. He also said I was obviously not pulled tight enough, hence that is why I already have the beginning of jowls again, my cheeks are no longer full and my smile line see picture 3 of my original review is back again. All in All it will cost me close to $10,000 to have a complete revision, almost as much as my original cost with the rip off Dr, Dr. Dewire. As he is retiring and obviously he should have a long time ago, many people in the future will be saved from his inferior work on faces. I am distraught over this, pretty depressed most days, hate looking in the mirror in natural light and wish oh wish I had chosen a different Dr. I will have a revision within the next year. I have asked for my pre operative notes from him, as of yet the has not sent them. I am blowing up these pictures and taking them to his office on Monday and will beg anyone in the waiting room to think twice before allowing him to touch any part of them other than their boobs.
Richmond Plastic Surgeon

Do not go to this Doctor for a facelift or neck lift his work in this area is sub par and he will not own up to doing anything wrong. My neck is terrible and my face is falling after only 7 months and he will only do something about it if I pay. He should have got it right in the first place.

1 out of 5 stars Overall rating
4 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
4 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
4 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
5 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
4 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
3 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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