One of the first places to show the telltale signs of aging is the neck. A neck lift, also known as a platysmaplasty, is the removal of fat and excess skin on the neck to give the patient a younger, more refreshed look. Neck lift surgery is one of the most transformative procedures in plastic surgery and is also considered as one of the safest and most reliable. The evolution of medicine and surgical technology has evolved so much so that present day neck surgery can be performed with minimal scars and incisions.
When considering any procedure or surgery, it’s extremely important to keep in mind and get clarity from your surgeon in regards to the risks the procedure involves. With neck lift surgery risks include but are not limited to:
- Anesthesia adverse events
- Skin Irregularities
- Neck Tightness
The odds of experiencing such adverse events are rare however, it’s important to let your doctor know of all underlying health conditions, medications and lifestyle behaviors. It’s also important to keep in mind the experience of the surgeon performing the neck lift. Choosing a surgeon with inexperience increases the chance of experiencing such risks involved with the procedure.
If you are considering a neck lift surgery, do keep in mind that although it is recognized as an overall ‘safe’ procedure, it is still a major surgery. Do not take the word ‘safe’ lightly and understand that any manipulation to your natural, body build does expose you to such risks and possible complications. When preparing for your neck lift, it’s imperative to make certain adjustments to your lifestyle as recommended by your surgeon. If you’re a current, everyday smoker, be sure to quit smoking at least 2 weeks prior to your scheduled surgery. Smoking causes complications as well as delay in recovery and can affect the overall outcome of your surgery. Abstaining from excessively fatty and sugary foods as well as alcohol or recreational drug use is strongly discouraged. If you take any over the counter medications such as NSAIDS for pain, it’s crucial to discontinue the use of these as these medications cause prolonged bleeding. Be sure to schedule a ride to and from your surgical center as you will not be in the condition to drive yourself home post-procedure. Following through and attending all follow-up appointments is highly suggested in order to track your healing process.
Depending on your individual results wanted from your neck lift surgery, the procedure is generally straightforward. Although each patient is different with different skin types, the actual procedure follows 4 steps:
Step 1: Anesthesia is given to you for your comfort
Step 2: Incisions are made up to the surgeon’s discretion to remove excess fat and tissue
Step 3: The underlying muscles are tightened to restructure the neck
Step 4: The incisions made are then closed
Optimal results are usually seen within 6 months post procedure. The presence of scarring is usually quite minimal unless you continue with your less desirable lifestyle habits i.e. smoking, drinking alcohol, drug use. Bruising and swelling is normal and although the time frame for these to subside varies between patients, it’s usually noticed to have diminished a week or two post surgery. Neck lifts usually last between 5 and 10 years as they are not permanent enhancements however, staying healthy and being proactive to protect your neck lift can help your procedure last longer (i.e. wearing sunscreen in the sun, staying hydrated etc.).