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Facelift or Rhytidectomy

Full neck and facelift in Tampa, FL

 

As we age, the skin begins to loosen on your face and neck because of the loss of elasticity and volume. A facelift or rhytidectomy can help you look as young as you feel. This surgical procedure removes excess facial skin, reposition facial volume and eliminate banding in the neck skin, resulting in a refreshed and rejuvenated appearance.

Facelifts are a complicated cosmetic procedure: the face is structurally complex, as it is comprised of many regions. For this reason, a skilled and highly specialized facial plastic surgeon is crucial to achieving your desired look. With over 25 years of experience performing facelifts as well as training and lecturing on the subject all across the globe, Dr. Farrior is one of the most experienced facial plastic surgeons in the world. Book a consultation with him today to see how a facelift can reinvigorate your face and boost your self-confidence.


  • Facelifts are one of the most common cosmetic procedures. On average, [X amount] facelift procedures are performed in America every year.
  • You’re in good company. On average, Dr. Farrior performs 100 facelift procedures each year.
  • A facelift improves the smile lines, jawline and banding in the neck. For improvement in the forehead or eyes, rejuvenation with a browlift and eyelid rejuvenation with a blepharoplasty are necessary.
  • Fine wrinkles, sun damage and age spots frequently require additional treatment to improve the overall quality of the skin, which can be performed before, after or with a facelift and may include intense pulsed light, chemical peels and laser.
  • Numerous pre and post-op pictures are also available at consultation as well as acute recovery pictures to help plan the return to your normal routine.
  • Swelling usually subsides within six weeks. Most patients feel comfortable returning to work in 10-14 days.
  • We follow you postoperatively for the period of a year with post-op appointments all included in the initial cost. Photos are taken initially at six months and 12 months to measure progress.


At this appointment, Dr. Farrior and his staff review your medical history, examine your face and skin, and discuss your goals and expectations for this facelift. The discussion will include how to prepare for surgery, what to expect on the day of surgery and what will take place during your recovery. At this time, photographs are taken.

Please note that there is a cost for the consultation. However, this is later applied to your surgery. If concerns remain after your facelift consultation—or if a family member or your support person would like to get informed—we offer a follow-up consultation at no extra charge. Our goal is to help you make an informed decision and we want you to feel confident choosing us.



  • Avoiding products that may thin the blood making you more likely to bleed. These include non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications like aspirin, Ibuprofen, alcohol, vitamin E, energy drinks and any nutritional supplements that are not approved by Dr. Farrior.
  • Sun exposure—especially a sunburn—prior to surgery. This thickens the skin, causing vasodilation and increasing the risk of bleeding.
  • Increasing your intake of vitamin C to 2000mg per day and taking Arnica starting the day prior to your facelift and continuing afterward for 2 weeks.


On the morning of your surgery, do not wear makeup, lash extensions or hair products. This includes mascara, blush, cover up and hair spray. These cosmetic products are difficult to remove in the preparation for the surgery.

Plan to arrive early for your facelift, as undue stress may compromise your ability to recover. Giving yourself some extra time can help avoid the anxiety that comes with fighting traffic and being in a rush. The goal is to control everything that might influence your facelift outcome.

When you arrive at our practice, our staff will greet you and escort you to our surgical suite. You are provided surgical attire and potentially given medications to help with the post-operative recovery. Our anesthesiologist will review his plan for your care, and Dr. Farrior will also meet with you once more to discuss the plan to achieve your desired results from the facelift and perform surgical marking.

After you are taken into the operating room for your facelift, the anesthesiologist will begin to sedate you. To ensure your comfort and safety, Dr. Farrior performs this procedure under general anesthesia. This method also gives him adequate time to do his best work and deliver your ideal results. The surgery takes about three hours; however, if the facelift is done in conjunction with any other facial rejuvenation surgery, the time will vary.

Generally, facelift patients spend an hour and a half in our recovery room following surgery. A recovery nurse, an R.N., B.S.N. who is expertly trained to help manage any pain, will be there with you. There will be a dressing covering your forehead and cheeks and neck, which must be left in place overnight. It will be removed at your post-operative visit the day after surgery.

At home, you will need to have a caregiver who stays with you day and night as it’s imperative to take it easy immediately following surgery. Try to remain quiet and at rest, stay in bed except to go to the bathroom, keep your head elevated and place ice on your eyes and cheeks as much as possible. Initially, consume only small volumes of liquids and soft foods typically given to a child with an upset stomach: ginger ale, cola, 7 Up, broth, bananas, crackers, chicken soup and Jell-O. Once you are able to eat and drink these items with no problems, you may advance your diet. Avoid products that have no substance—diet beverages and even water can make you feel more nauseated. The more hydrated you are, the better you will feel.



Over the first five days, you will notice dramatic improvement in your discomfort as well as your disposition. Facial swelling goes down, but the bruising will sometimes become more noticeable the second or third day following a facelift. As the swelling continues to improve, some irregularities may become apparent over the cheeks and upper neck—this is normal and these issues will generally resolve themselves with time.

On the third postoperative day, you can shower and even wash your hair. Do not submerge your incisions in the bathtub, a swimming pool or at the beach for another 10 days. Sun exposure on the incisions should be avoided for 6 months. This can be accomplished with a hat, a scarf and sunglasses.  Sunscreen can be applied after three weeks.  Hair color and makeup can also be applied after three weeks.

In the first six weeks following your facelift, you should sleep with your head elevated and avoid strenuous activity such as weight lifting. You can ease into cardiovascular exercise after 3 weeks. Use common sense and listen to your face and body: if any activity causes discomfort, swelling or tightness in the face and neck, discontinue that activity immediately and do not attempt it again for a week.

For the first seven to ten days after a facelift, you may have misgivings about your decision because of the amount of swelling that can distort the appearance. Some patients may even experience a postsurgical depression, which is both a physiological and psychological response to the stress of surgery. This will usually resolve and does not require treatment. The face and neck usually remain swollen for about six weeks, but most patients feel capable of returning to work within 10-14 days. If you are in a business that relies on face-to-face contact, you may want to consider taking three weeks off from work.

To put your facelift recovery in a social perspective, it will be three months before you want to appear in the wedding photographs of your children, six weeks before you want to attend your niece’s or nephew’s wedding, three weeks before you want to entertain work acquaintances and two weeks before dinner in a dark restaurant with your significant other would be comfortable.

You will be aware of the fact that you had a facelift for at least six months. It is not painful—but your face will feel different due to an altered sensation that exists in all scar tissue. This sensation fluctuates with diet, activity and, quite frankly, barometric pressure and altitude. It gradually returns to normal in six months, but can take up to a year in some cases.

Throughout your entire recovery process, it is imperative that you do not take advice from the internet. Everyone heals differently: the people online are not you and do not have the experience or knowledge of your case like Dr. Farrior and his staff. If you have any questions, contact Farrior Facial Plastic Surgery immediately; our staff is informed, experienced and totally committed to your care and recovery.