There are so many ways to address the signs of aging today, it can be difficult to decide which way is best. There are advantages to nonsurgical approaches like Botox® and other injectables. With this conservative treatment, you don’t have to think about downtime or caring for incisions that need to heal. At the same time, you have to maintain your results with more injections as often as every few months. The surgical approach to facial rejuvenation, such as a deep plane facelift, does require some downtime and special care for a short period. However, the results of treatment are much more profound and long-lasting.
Dr. Michael Somenek consistently achieves remarkable results by treating every single patient like a VIP. Here, we perform a thorough consultation and intake visit, which you leave with an abundance of information, education, and expectations for optimal results. To schedule a visit with us today, call our Washington, DC office at (202) 810-7700.
What is a Deep Plane Facelift?
This term refers to a particular approach to facelift surgery in which the area of focus is the layer of connective tissue under the skin but over the facial muscles. This layer of tissue is called the SMAS, the superficial muscular aponeurotic system. It is performed to lift and tighten the lower face, from the upper neck and jawline to the cheeks, without causing a “pulled” appearance.
How does a Deep Plane Facelift differ from a Traditional Facelift?
The deep plane facelift focuses on some of the same concerns that are addressed in a traditional facelift. These include a softened or sagging jawline, flat cheeks, and creases between the nose and mouth (nasolabial folds). Using the traditional facelift method, a surgeon repositions the skin and limits superficial tissue. This technique tends to be limiting with the amount of lift and repositioning that can occur. Using the deep plane facelift method, Drs. Somenek and Pittman reposition the tissue beneath the skin through precise techniques that include releasing the four ligaments that tether the SMAS to the skin, allowing all structures to move more freely. This creates a much more natural repositioning of the tissues and achieves a more comprehensive rejuvenated appearance.
How is Deep Plane Facelift Performed?
This facelift is performed on an outpatient basis and may involve IV sedation. The surgery begins with a few small, curved incisions discreetly placed at the hairline by the temple, these run from the temple to the top of the ear and around the back of the ear along the hairline. The skin is then separated from the SMAS and the underlying muscle and tissue are released. The SMAS is repositioned to lift the cheek pad and lower face tissue upward to a more youthful position. The skin is conservatively trimmed and redraped over the SMAS for a tension-free result. Incisions are closed using fine sutures.
How Long is Recovery After a Deep Plane Facelift?
It can take several months to completely heal after a deep plane facelift, but the majority of your recovery will take place in the first two weeks after your procedure. You’ll return home a few hours after your procedure, and we will see you in the office the next day, and at ~1- and 2 weeks post-op.
For your convenience, we also offer one-on-one nursing care that can accompany you to the hotel across the street from our surgical suite. Drs. Somenek will arrive at your room the next morning to see how you are doing and review the next week of recovery with you.
In the few days after your deep plane facelift, you can expect to develop some swelling and occasional bruising. You can help swelling resolve by following a low sodium diet and sitting more upright during the day and while you sleep. You may initially manage your post-op discomfort by taking prescription painkillers.
You can expect to look and feel significantly improved about two weeks after your facelift. The lower face and neck will still feel tight and a bit numb in some areas, which will resolve with time. You may still have some discomfort and minor bruising or swelling. These may be manageable with makeup and over-the-counter pain relievers. You may feel well enough to go back to work, provided that your occupation is not strenuous in any way. You’ll need to continue avoiding more rigorous physical activity for several weeks and we will give you specific guidance on returning back to your normal daily activities.
Most patients may travel 2-3 weeks after their procedure. Our on-site Medical Spa offers recovery support, including lymphatic drainage massage (MLD), and hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT), which may expedite your healing. To optimize your beautiful result, we will request that you continue to follow up with Drs. Somenek throughout the year following your procedure.