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" I was very impressed with Dr. Macdonald's surgical capabilities, his strive for perfection, and the personal attention that I received while under his care."
- San Francisco, CA
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    dr. michael r. macdonald website



    Facelift and Neck Lift



    Facelift surgery

    Are you in your late 40's to 60’s? Do you have increased skin laxity and facial volume loss, prominent jowls and neck bands, deep "smile lines" and fine wrinkles above your upper lip? Have you decided it’s time to wipe a decade off your age so that you look as youthful as you feel?

    Surgery patient check-up with Dr. MacdonaldDr. Macdonald consults with a patient about how a facelift will rejuvenate her overall appearance

    If you can relate and you believe it's silly not to pursue the rejuvenating effects of cosmetic surgery, then you are a good candidate for facelift surgery.


    how does a facelift change my appearance?

    Many people have the misconception that a facelift takes care of revitalizing the entire face. More accurately, facelift surgery focuses on the lower two-thirds of your face—cheeks, jowls, jawline and neck.

    Facelift surgery is technically termed rhytidectomy. This name suggests its focus on smoothing deep facial wrinkles and folds. It also lifts saggy jowls in order to redefine your jawline, elevates drooping cheeks to revolumize your midface, and addresses neck bands and loose skin.

    For the most natural-looking outcome, Dr. Macdonald's practice is to routinely complement your facelift with neck liposuction or a neck lift surgery as part of the facelift procedure.

    Facelift and neck lift surgery combinations lead to a smoothly contoured neck and chin, allowing the natural cheek silhouette and jawline to prevail. Successful facelift and neck lift outcomes can remove 7-10 years from your appearance, restoring youthful vitality and self-esteem as a result.


    what should I do before facelift surgery?

    It’s wise to do some careful planning and focus on getting your body and skin in its healthiest state possible before your facelift treatment. Consult our surgical recovery chart and plan conservatively for the maximum recommended downtime.

    Your body and mind need to be rested and at peace for the best surgical recovery experience. Facelift surgery is likely something you plan to do once in your lifetime, so don’t rush back to work or other life obligations too soon.


    facelift surgery details

    Surgical rejuvenation of your face and neck is accomplished by lifting underlying muscles of the midface and cheek, jowls and neck areas.

    • Facelifts are often performed in a hospital setting where post-op observation is available. General anesthesia is typically the type of anesthesia administered.
    • Incisions are carefully placed in natural skin creases behind your ears and within your hairline to make scar detection difficult.
    • Dr. Macdonald focuses his most important tightening and re-contouring efforts deep in the musculature of the face and neck, and in the subcutaneous connective and soft fatty tissue under the skin.
    • He removes unwanted pockets of drooping fatty tissue using appropriate liposuction techniques.
    • Finally, he realigns your skin to the new contours of your rejuvenated face so a conservative amount of excess skin is removed.
    • Facelift surgery can take 4-6 hours or more, depending on what additional procedures are combined with it.

    The beneficial effects of facelift surgery are felt forever into the future. Facelift surgery resets your aging clock. Thus, you always look about 10 years younger than if you never had surgery. See the before and after photos results yourself.


    facelift surgery is often combined with…

    To achieve comprehensive facial rejuvenation, facelifts are often complemented with brow lifts and/or eyelid surgery to address the effects of aging in your upper face. 

    To address aging in your midface or upper cheek area, elements of a midface mini lift (a.k.a., a cheek suspension, mini facelift or 48-hour lift) are always incorporated into your facelift procedure. A neck lift is always incorporated into your facelift, as needed, to achieve the most effective and natural-looking rejuvenation results.


    healing after facelift surgery

    • Immediately following surgery, Dr. Macdonald applies a light pressure dressing to be removed in 1-2 days at your first follow-up.
    • Bed rest is suggested the first 1-2 days to give your body the energy it needs to heal. Otherwise, post-op pain and discomfort is minimal, but pain medication is prescribed as necessary.
    • Any non-dissolvable sutures and staples (above the hairline) are removed at 5-7 days post-op.
    • A substantial level of post-op bruising and swelling occurs immediately following surgery, and likely persists for up to 2 weeks.
    • At 2 weeks post-op, you should look and feel well enough to be out in public without feeling self-conscious. You may want to use makeup concealers to disguise any faint residual bruising.
    • For several months post-op, you may experience numbness in your earlobes, which gradually subsides as you heal.
    • Your final results are evident at 6 months post-op.

    Read more details about recuperating from facelift surgery. You may also want to download the Facelift Post-Op Instruction Sheet to have on hand as easy reference for any questions that may arise.

    Remember to give your body the time it needs to fully heal. We recommend you follow the 2-4-6 rule for resuming any physical exertion following this major surgery. Take steps to minimize the appearance of any scars, particularly in the first 6-12 months post-op.


    Neck lift

    Do you have a pronounced, sagging neck “waddle” or prominent vertical bands in the neck that have become a source of self-consciousness for you? If so, you are a good candidate for neck contouring surgery.

    Neck lift surgery before and afterNeck lift produces extremely satisfying results with substantially increased lift and firming

    Depending on the severity of your aging neck, simple neck liposuction or submentoplasty may suffice to generate your desired improvement. Severely aged necks usually require both liposuction and a neck lift for deep neck muscle tightening.

    neck lift restores youthful appearance

    The onset and severity of aesthetic aging neck issues varies greatly by patient. You may be genetically predisposed to early aging in your neck and thus seek a neck lift with liposuction prior to ever considering a facelift.

    Or, you may be ready for a facelift, but your neck skin is still relatively firm and elastic, requiring just a little neck liposuction or submenoplasty without the need for a more invasive muscle-tightening lift.

    No matter what degree of neck rejuvenation is necessary, it improves your youthful look immensely. Neck wrinkles and creases are smoothed and diminished. The area under your chin is redefined and lifted to highlight a smooth jawline.

    To get a sense of the amount of lifting and neck sag correction you can expect with neck lift surgery, check out the facelift before and after photos where many of those patients have also received the benefits of a neck lift with their facelift procedure. Also, explore the chin/neck before and after photos where you see examples of how neck lift surgery can sometimes be combined with neck liposuction or chin augmentation to create even better results.


    what should I do before neck lift surgery?

    Planning before treatment ensure your neck lift surgery goes smoothly. Consult the surgical recovery chart to plan well for post-op healing time.


    neck lift surgery details

    A neck lift is performed when neck liposuction alone is not enough to achieve desired results.

    • For most neck lifts, incisions are carefully placed in natural skin creases behind your ears and within your hairline to disguise and minimize residual scars.
    • Dr. Macdonald removes fat using liposuction techniques through an incision under the chin. He tightens underlying muscles with permanent sutures and removes excess skin as needed.
    • Neck lift surgery alone takes 2 hours. Combined with a facelift, surgery is about 4-5 hours.


    Neck lift is often combined with...

    To achieve comprehensive rejuvenation, a neck lift or neck liposuction is paired with facelift surgery 80% of the time. Neck liposuction or lift is also frequently complemented with brow lifts and eyelid surgery to address the effects of aging in your upper face. 


    healing after neck lift surgery

    • Immediately following surgery, Dr. Macdonald applies a light pressure dressing or chinstrap to be removed at your first follow-up in 5-7 days.
    • Post-surgical pain and discomfort is minimal. Prescription pain medication is rarely requested.
    • Swelling and bruising is normal within the first 5-7 days post-op.
    • Any non-dissolvable sutures are removed at 5-7 days post-op.
    • At 5-7 days post-op, you should look and feel well enough to return to work or other usual daily activities. You may want to use makeup concealers to disguise any faint residual bruising and scars.
    • You may experience numbness in parts of your neck for weeks to months until your body has healed at 3-6 months.

    Follow post-surgery guidelines to optimize your healing and recovery after neck lift surgery.