Face Lift Plastic Surgery (Rhytidectomy)

Procedural Tools Invented by Dr. Sherman

Dr. Sherman invented the fiber-optic retractor with suction that is the most commonly used retractor in breast surgery throughout the world
Dr. Sherman invented the fiber-optic retractor with suction that is the most commonly used retractor in breast surgery throughout the world. Originally, this retractor was made by the Luxtec Corp. Since that time, it has been duplicated and copied by multiple manufacturers throughout the world and is now commonly used in face lift surgery.

Face lift procedures have evolved over the past few generations into a safe, predictable method to rejuvenate the face, without the pulled "done" look of the
past procedures.

Facial plastic surgery overview by John E. Sherman, MD, FACS New York Plastic Surgeon

Operation: Dr. Sherman uses the most proven techniques for face lift cosmetic surgery. Depending on the age and the relative health of the patient, face lift cosmetic surgery can be performed in the hospital or in our fully-accredited and equipped operating suite in New York City. Various options are used with the face lift: mini facelifts, neck tightening or brow lift.

This cosmetic surgery procedure is usually performed in the our fully accredited office surgery suite. Patients may desire to stay one night in the hospital instead of the office setting for their face lift. The operation can be performed at

  • The New York Presbyterian Hospital – Weill Cornell Medical Center
    (Rated the Best Hospital in NY, US News and World Report)
  • Lenox Hill Hospital
  • The Greenwich Hospital, Greenwich CT

Age of the Patient: A face lift is usually performed on patients from the age of 40 through the seventies. Depending on the age of the patient, the goal
of the face lift operation may be entirely different, as well as the type of operation, and where the plastic surgery is performed. Of course, the patient must be of good health, and if older, must have medical clearance.

Anesthesia: Face lift plastic surgery is usually performed under intravenous sedation anesthesia, avoiding the general anesthesia. However, there are certain patients with whom the general anesthesia may be preferable. This may be combined with the blepharoplasty (eyelid plastic surgery), or other body contouring procedures.

Convalescence: The convalescence for a full face lift is approximately 2-3 weeks. This is the time that you may feel totally comfortable returning to your social calendar, without the need to explain discoloration and swelling to your friends and working associates. In general, the younger the patient, the quicker the return to full function. This may be as short as 10 days to two weeks after the face lift procedure. The first two to three days is marked by a feeling of tightness, and swelling. This improves over the following week. Modest pain is usually controlled with the use of oral pain medication.

Variations of the Face Lift Operation:

  • Face Lift: This is performed on the younger patient, without the neck and or brow being done. The entire operation takes less than two hours and is performed in the office. IV sedation is the anesthesia of choice.
  • Neck Lift: An isolated neck lift may be performed in some patients where most of the changes are below the chin and in the neck area. A small incision is made behind the chin prominence, and may be made in conjunction with traditional behind the ear incisions to maximize correction.
  • Forehead Lift (Coronal forehead lift): In some patients an open brow approach may be indicated . These are patients in whom there is an excess of skin, and the patient has a low anterior (front) hairline. The incision for the face lift is made in the hairline across the top of the scalp. The procedure is then performed open,
    and the scalp is tightened. This face lift procedure method will raise the edge of the hairline, and should not be used in patients who have a high forehead line.

  • Forehead lift (Endoscopic Forehead lift): Forehead lifts are used in face lift procedures for correction of the eyebrow when it has descended too low. It also can be used to fix a permanent furrow between the eyebrows, and forehead lines. Dr. Sherman uses the latest techniques such as the endoscope, a device that has been popularized in knee surgery. Three small incisions are made in the hairline in this face lift procedure method. Then the endoscope, actually a small camera, is inserted and used for correction. Brow correction is accomplished as well as the correction of the glabellar furrows (the muscle between the eyelids).This face lift plastic surgery procedure minimizes scarring and discomfort.

Potential Complications: As in all surgery, there are well-known and reported complications. Dr. Sherman will go over all of these with you. During this discussion, Dr. Sherman will also tell you the relative frequency of all complications, and the treatment. These potential complications include hematoma, and facial nerve damage. This nerve damage may be temporary, or permanent after the face lift procedure.

Short Scar Face Lift Technique

In the past few years, several New York surgeons have developed and refined the short scar for face lifts. Dr. Sherman has been employing this advancement since December of 2000. This greatly reduces the size of the scar located in the hairline and the area behind the ear.The scar now is limited to the inside of the ear, and the area behind the ear. In older patients, where there is a lot of skin to be tightened in the face lift, a small extension may be used near the sideburn area and behind the ear.

The advantage of this new technique is substantial. The scar is better concealed, and there is less healing time after the face lift. The scar is not exposed even when the patient wears her hair "up." Dr. Sherman will discuss this option during the consultation.

To set up a private consultation with Dr. Sherman, contact us today. Call us at (212) 535-2300 or e-mail us.

Member American Society of Plastic Surgeons, Member, American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, Fellow American College of Surgeons, Member American Society of Maxillofacial Surgeons