What to Look for in a Facelift Surgeon
By David Sayah, MD, FACS
Selecting a high-quality and experienced surgeon is essential when it comes to rejuvenating the appearance of your face. A skilled plastic surgeon can offer his or her expertise not only in the context of facial plastic surgery procedures such as a facelift or eyelid surgery, but also has the detailed knowledge of facial anatomy necessary to achieve excellent results with nonsurgical treatments such as BOTOX® and injectable fillers.
When considering a facelift, pay special attention to these factors that can help you to locate a surgeon who is experienced and who can deliver the results you are looking for.
A Comprehensive Approach
Many women and men who are considering a facelift have noticed loose and wrinkled skin on their cheeks and along their jaw line. And that’s exactly the type of facial aging that a facelift is designed to correct. But it’s important to work with a surgeon who can take a look at all of the aspects of facial aging that you are experiencing, and provide you with a more complete picture of how certain facial plastic surgery procedures can help you achieve a rejuvenated appearance.
The reality is that many subtle factors add up to contribute to an aged appearance, so focusing only on your jaw line while not addressing your eyes, brow or neck may result in an unnatural result. A skilled facial surgeon will understand how to balance multiple areas of the face for a proportional look. This doesn’t necessarily mean that if you are considering a facelift, you also need eyelid surgery, a brow lift, and many other procedures. What it does mean is that maybe your surgeon will be more conservative in correcting the aging around your jaw and cheeks so that your end result still looks appropriate and natural for your age.
Understanding of Non-Surgical Options
Cosmetic doctors have a wealth of alternatives for non-surgical facial rejuvenation, which has made the facelift a less common initial solution than it once was. Now, a plastic surgeon may first recommend a non-surgical treatment such as a facial dermal filler or skin tightening procedure like Ultherapy® to create a younger look without surgery. Or, these treatments may be performed in conjunction with a facelift for more complete results. Ultherapy®, while not as well-known as bigger name brands like BOTOX® Cosmetic, can achieve remarkable skin rejuvenation results for many people who previously only had surgery as an option.
Board-certified plastic surgeons have advanced training in reconstructive and cosmetic surgery techniques. Earning board certification in plastic surgery is voluntary. Many cosmetic surgeons offering facial cosmetic surgery procedures have little to no
additional training in surgical techniques of the face. By choosing a board-certified plastic surgeon for your facelift, you can feel confident in the additional level of training and demonstrated knowledge of plastic surgery techniques.
Honesty and Warmth
You need to have a close connection and good rapport with your facial surgeon. After all, he or she is responsible for understanding how you want to look after surgery and helping you to get there. An experienced surgeon knows the importance of providing honest, candid advice about whether a person’s goals are reasonable and what the best approach is to achieve those goals. This means that at times, a really good facelift surgeon may not tell you exactly what you want to hear, and that’s OK. Of course, for you to hear their feedback and have a positive discussion, the surgeon also needs to have a warm, friendly bedside manner that demonstrates a care for you as a person. While this is the last item being discussed here, it is still a very important element to ensure you feel good about your decisions and comfortable that you are in good hands.