As we get older, the skin and muscles associated with our face and neck tend to wrinkle and sag, creating a more aged appearance. While a surgical facelift procedure cannot stop aging, reverse sun damage to skin or remove all facial wrinkles, it allows patients to achieve a more youthful look. Cedar Valley ASCENT of Waterloo, Iowa and Dr. David J. Congdon offer a specialized facelift procedure to help you improve the look of your face and neck—and your confidence.

Facelift Surgery

Facelift surgery is also known as rhytidectomy, a procedure in which your surgeon makes an incision near the temple and stretching across the front of the face around the hairline. During the surgery, the underlying muscle and tissue are tightened and excess fat and skin are removed. Once these steps are taken, the patient’s skin is sutured and the surgery is complete. The incision size can also vary and be smaller depending upon the level of surgery being undertaken. Extra skin and hanging jowls in the neck line and jowl area can be addressed through a neck lift, which is surgically performed through an incision from the front ear lobe to the lower end of the scalp. This surgery is performed over the course of several hours, with most people going home the same day.

Post-surgical facial bandages and any drainage tubes are removed within a few days of the surgery, with stitches being removed no later than 10 days after the procedure. Bruising and swelling in the face will subside over time, as will face stiffness and skin numbness, with normal activities resuming for most patients within a month or slightly less, of surgery. All surgeries include risks and those for facelifts, including infections and potential nerve damage, although uncommon, should be considered, as should the fact that many insurance companies do not cover all expenses associated with this procedure. An important consideration for patients is the experience of their providers: Dr. David J. Congdon of Cedar Valley ASCENT is an experienced facial plastic surgeon who possesses the medical expertise and artistic vision to provide you with your desired facial enhancement.

Is Facelift Surgery Right for You?

As with all facial plastic surgery, good health and realistic expectations are prerequisites. Every patient should understand the limitations of rhytidectomy and it is important that he or she possess a stable psychology. The goal of each facelift surgery is to improve the person’s overall facial appearance and it is vital for the patient to maintain a realistic attitude about the surgery. We offer a specialized imaging system that can take your photograph before the procedure and show you how you may look after a facelift surgery. Additionally, the patient’s skin type, ethnic background, degree of skin elasticity, individual healing history and basic bone structure are all factors that should be discussed prior to surgery. Age is also a relevant pre-surgery consideration however, this procedure is sometimes performed on patients in their thirties and successful surgery has also been performed on patients in their eighties.

Case Study

The patient featured in the photos below underwent facelift surgery, receiving a facelift with upper and lower lid blepharoplasty, endoscopic forehead lift with a midface lift and a pre-jowl chin implant.