Loss of skin elasticity and the appearance of static lines are an inevitable sign of aging - often displaying themselves right across your forehead. Plus at least 50 percent of the apparent problem with the upper eyelids is due to brow sag, also known as brow ptosis. Permanent brow furrows and lines across the upper part of the nose in conjunction with sagging skin around the eyes often result in men and women looking sad, mad or tired.
Fortunately, advances in cosmetic surgery allow for several solutions to this problem. For fine lines on the forehead or a slight lift of the brow, products like Botox can make a significant impact allowing you to revive your youthful appearance. However, Botox cannot repair sagging skin. For deep lines and sagging skin, a forehead lift is the only way to permanently rejuvenate your look.
The terms forehead lift and brow lift are often used interchangeable because they are in fact the same procedure. A brow/forehead lift is a surgical procedure that can be performed as an outpatient procedure either under local or general anesthesia.
By surgically lifting and tightening the skin & muscle, a brow lift:
One of the biggest concerns amongst patients interested in a brow lift or forehead lift is surgery resulting in a “surprised look”. When skillfully performed by a qualified plastic surgeon, your surgery will result in a smooth forehead and a nicely refined appearance of the eyelid and orbital skin. Facial rejuvenation procedures, such as a brow lift, are intended to enhance your appearance- making you look more youthful and rested rather than changing what you look like.
In addition to all of the standard precautions that you must take prior to surgery, including no smoking, caffeine, tylenol or any type of blood thinners, you will also be required to visit your eye doctor to be sure that you do not have any underlying silent eye diseases like glaucoma, which can be aggravated by the surgery. Your doctor will provide you with a complete list prior to your procedure.
Medical advances have allowed surgeons to specialize is several different techniques for brow lift procedures. Depending on the amount of excess skin present and the result your aim to achieve, your plastic surgeon will recommend the ideal brow lift technique for you. Your surgeon will discuss your options with you in great detail during your complimentary consultation.
Endotines are low profile soft tissue fixation devices utilizing Multi-Point technology to securely hold lifted muscle and tissue in place. They are 60% smaller than standard fixation devices and their ultra thin design allow for less visibility, less sensitivity and absorption. This technique is favorable among patients and surgeons alike because it is minimally invasive, requires little down time and allows for simple readjustments if necessary.
To perform an endotine forehead lift, small incisions are made and the endotines are carefully positioned and fixated to achieve the desired result. This requires no metal screws or sutures which can cause wound irritation or pinched hair follicles causing hair loss. Forehead endotines are bioabsorbable, so no additional surgery will be required to remove the soft tissue fixation device.
The term endoscopic refers to a technique where tiny cameras are used to view inside the body. An endoscopic brow lift uses these tools to create a desirable result by leaving as little scars as possible. Several small incisions are made along the top of hairline, skin and tissue are then tightened internally using small precise surgical tools. Excess skin is removed and the incisions are closed using either removable or absorbable sutures.
The principles of all brow lifts are similar in that the tissue and skin on the forehead is lifted and muscles are tightened to give you a smoother more rejuvenated, well rested appearance. The coronal brow lift is more invasive than that of an endotine or endoscopic forehead lift, but may be necessary to achieve the result you desire. An incision is made across the top of the head from ear to ear (as pictured to the right). The skin on the scalp is then lifted and muscles are tightened before suturing the incision closed. In some cases clips will be used to hold everything in place and are typically removed after about a week.
Similar to that of a coronal brow lift, a subcutaneous forehead lift requires an incision reaching from ear to hear, however this technique requires the incision to be made at the base of the hair line. The positive aspect of this technique is that the hair line will not recede as a result of the procedure, however unlike the coronal brow lift, scars will not be hidden by the hairline unless the hair is styled in a forward position (such as having bangs for women or longer forward styled hair for men).
Following a forehead lift you will most likely experience mild pain for about a week or so, which can be alleviated by pain medication administered and prescribed by your surgeon. Immediate recovery takes place 5-10 days following your procedure. Most results can be seen in approximately 2 weeks, although depending on which brow lift technique you select and the natural healing process of your body, mild swelling may be present for up to 3 months.
When performed by a qualified surgeon in a fully accredited surgery center, complications resulting from a forehead lift are rare. The most common side-effects include unfavorable scarring, hematoma, infection, temporary changes in skin sensation or hair loss at the incision site. More serious complications may include nerve damage or an elevated hair line. These risks and precautions taken by your doctor to prevent them will be discussed with you prior to your procedure. Your surgeon will also discuss any risks associated with the use of general anesthesia.
It is important to note that a brow lift will not correct eye ptosis, excess skin on the eyes or ectropian (sagging of the lower eyelid). If you are concerned about the appearance of your eyes you may want to consider a blepharoplasty, more commonly known as eyelid surgery. We offer advanced upper and lower eyelid surgery procedures, as well Endotine Transbleph procedures for a less invasive approach. This procedure is often performed in conjunction with a brow lift to achieve desired results.
If you are interested in facial rejuvenation surgery, please browse our site for additional information, brow lift before and after pictures and our 3-D Surgical Animation Tool. We also offer a digital imaging application to help you visualize your potential results. To schedule a consultation with one of our qualified plastic surgeons, please call 866-372-3288.