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San Francisco Bay Area

Facelift Side Effects and Risks

Eyelid Surgery (Blepharoplasty), Facelift

October 22, 2012 | 3 minute read

woman brushing hand across face in front of bushThe physical signs of aging can be difficult to ignore, especially those affecting the face. Wrinkles, loss of volume, creases, and sagging skin can be difficult to accept. One of the ways that San Francisco plastic surgery patients can overcome the physical signs of facial aging is through facelift surgery. If you are bothered by the signs of facial aging and desire to restore a more youthful, smooth, refreshed appearance to your facial contours, you may be an ideal candidate for facelift surgery. Through facelift surgery, we are able to effectively reverse the signs of aging, thereby achieving a rejuvenated and revitalized appearance. While there are many aesthetic benefits of facelift surgery, it is not without risks. San Francisco plastic surgeon Kimberly Henry will do everything possible to ensure a safe surgery with an optimal outcome; however, all surgery carries some amount of risk.

Facelift Side Effects

Side effects are to be expected when undergoing any surgical procedure; this holds true for facelift surgery as well. While side effects are a normal consequence of surgery, most side effects will begin to fade relatively early in the recovery process. For our patients in San Francisco, facelift side effects include:

  • Swelling: Swelling is not only common after surgery, but completely normal. While this is true, many patients are shocked by the amount of swelling that occurs after their facelift procedure. While swelling can be distressing, it is not usually a cause for concern. As the healing process continues swelling will begin to decrease and, over time, disappear completely. Most patients will experience a decrease in swelling just days after their facelift procedure.
  • Pain: Patients will be given medication to help control any pain or discomfort experienced after surgery. Most patients experience minimal pain after their facelift procedure. Most pain or discomfort can be easily controlled with prescription pain medication.
  • Numbness: Numbness is a common side effect after surgery. It will usually fade within a few days after undergoing facelift surgery.
  • Bruising: Bruising is a natural side effect of facelift surgery. It is most noticeable immediately following your facelift surgery and for the first few days to couple weeks after the procedure. Bruising around the eyes may give the appearance of “black eyes” and should begin to improve every day until it completely disappears.
  • Scarring: San Francisco facelift surgeon Kimberly Henry skillfully and artfully places incisions during surgery in such a way that any scarring that occurs is as inconspicuous as possible. Most scarring that occurs in facelift surgery is hidden within the hairline and is not an issue for the vast majority of patients.

Facelift Risks

Patients should understand the risks associated with facelift surgery before undergoing the procedure. The most common post-operative complications after facelift surgery include infection, hematoma, reaction to anesthesia, and bleeding. Other risks after facelift surgery include:

  • Hair or skin loss
  • Skin discoloration
  • Tingling or numbness around the incision areas
  • Problems healing (a common risk for patients who smoke)
  • Injury to the facial nerves

Contact Dr. Kimberly Henry Today

To learn more about the side effects and risks associated with facelift surgery, please contact Dr. Kimberly Henry today. Dr. Henry would be happy to answer any questions you may have. While there are side effects and risks associated with facelift surgery, for the vast majority of patients the procedure is a safe and effective way to restore a youthful, rejuvenated appearance.

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