Neck lift is a popular choice for patients who seek to restore a youthful appearance to the neck by tightening skin, smoothing folds, eliminating visible muscle bands, removing loose skin under the chin, and firming the jawline.
Trusted Chicago plastic surgeon Dr. Marco Ellis is skilled in performing neck procedures in conjunction with facelift, ensuring that the texture, tone and muscle integrity of the neck matches your renewed facial appearance.
Causes and Options
If you were born with skin that lacks flexibility and resilience, you may develop neck skin that sags, creates folds, or hangs loosely. This is especially true in the case of patients who have lost a great deal of weight: Skin that lacks suppleness will not shrink sufficiently to conform to the reduced volume of a slimmer neck.
Liposuction, cervicoplasty and platysmaplasty are the main surgical solutions for improving the appearance of the neck. Liposuction removes fat, cervicoplasty eliminates excess skin and platysmaplasty goes even deeper by tightening or excising neck muscles. In most cases these procedures can be performed endoscopically, which reduces scarring and typically can be done as an outpatient procedure with a local anesthetic.
For liposuction, Dr. Ellis will make a small incision below the chin. Using a safe, effective surgical variation known as tumescent liposuction, he will then inject into the target area a fluid that aids in loosening pockets of fat and insert a narrow, hollow tube to suction out fat cells.
With cervicoplasty, skin is cut and lifted after incisions are made under the chin and behind the ears. The skin is permanently held taut with special sutures. Platysmaplasty is indicated when sagging neck muscles create a “banded” appearance. During this surgery, Dr. Ellis will tighten, realign and sometimes remove a portion of the particular neck muscles that have lost integrity. As with cervicoplasty, permanent sutures will keep the muscles taut and smooth.
For each of these procedures, you can expect swelling and a bruised appearance for up to 10 days. Once your surgical bandage is removed, usually on the day after surgery, you will wear a special compression garment around the neck in the evening for two weeks or more. Your final result will emerge after three to six months.
It is not unusual for patients to experience numbness in the neck area for several weeks after surgery. In rare cases, this numbness may persist permanently. Other possible risks include formation of scar tissue or appearance of small “puckering” surface indentations.
To learn more about ways to improve the appearance of the neck, schedule your personal consultation with experienced Chicago plastic surgeon Dr. Marco Ellis today.