Open Mid-Face Lift
The skin of the face is often noticeably affected by the aging process. Gravity, repetitive facial movements, exposure to the sun and other factors may take a toll on the delicate skin of the face over time.
One of the first areas of the face to show signs of damage is frequently the mid-face. The mid-face region extends from the lower eyelids to the mouth. Changes that typically begin to take place include sagging cheeks, loss of volume, depressions beneath the lower eyelids and the formation of deep lines between the nose and corner of the mouth, known as nasolabial folds.
A highly effective form of treatment to counter these issues is the mid-face lift. This procedure can target the problem areas and provide long-term results.
Advantages of a Mid-face Lift
Facelifts are a common procedure and they can be very successful in improving the appearance of the skin and mitigating the effects of aging. While a full facelift can provide patients with a refreshed and more youthful appearance, not everyone needs such an extensive treatment. If the problem is mainly in the region between the lower eyelids and mouth, a patient may benefit more from a mid-face lift that focuses only on this area for a less invasive procedure that does not submit other parts of the face to trauma. Therefore, patients in their late 30s and 40s are often good candidates for this procedure.
A mid-face lift restores youthful vitality to the central portion of the face, lifting the cheeks and smoothing smile lines to achieve a natural, uplifted look that is much longer-lasting than injections of dermal fillers. Mid-face lifts are ideal for reducing hollows under the eyes, improving the contour of the upper cheeks and diminishing nasolabial folds.
Many surgeons choose to perform a mid-face lift using a traditional, open approach due to the increased accuracy afforded by having a full view of the area and the exceptional outcomes typically obtained. Additionally, the risk of nerve damage may be lower with an open surgery since use of an endoscope may limit the doctor’s visibility.
The Open Mid-face Lift Procedure
The open mid-face lift procedure is typically performed with the patient under general or sedation anesthesia. It usually takes approximately two hours to complete, but this may vary by patient. The surgeon will make the smallest possible incisions and place them in inconspicuous areas such as the folds of the eyelids, at the hairline, near the ear or at the gum line within the mouth.
The surgical methods used may differ to some extent, depending on the specific problems being addressed. Generally, the tissues of the skin will be pulled taut and existing deposits of fat, known as the malar fat pad, will be repositioned higher on the cheeks. This can provide a more youthful contour as well as firm and tighten the skin. The incisions are then sutured closed.
Mid-face lifts are often performed in conjunction with lower-lid blepharoplasty to rejuvenate the area around the eyes or with augmentation to accentuate the cheeks.
Recovery from an Open Mid-face Lift Procedure
Following an open mid-face lift procedure, most patients experience some swelling, bruising and discomfort. These will often subside within a week, but a certain amount of residual swelling may remain for several weeks. The majority of patients can resume their normal daily activities seven to 10 days after the surgery.
Risks of an Open Mid-face Lift Procedure
An open mid-face lift is a safe and common procedure. However, all forms of surgery come with some potential risk. The risks that are associated with an open mid-face lift include short-term muscle numbness, infection, loss of hearing, accumulation of blood or fluid beneath the skin and blood clots.