About Brow Lift
Brow lift, also known as forehead lift or browplasty.
A forehead or brow lift is designed to reverse the effects of aging and gravity by tightening the skin of the forehead to restore a more youthful contour to your upper eyelids, eyebrows and forehead. It is used to elevate drooping eyebrows that can obstruct and to remove the wrinkles that run across the forehead, which are also known as worry lines. There are several methods of brow lift involving different lengths of incision at different locations. Occasionally an endoscope is also used.
If a sagging brow is inhibiting your facial expression and causing you to portray certain emotions to others such as anger, hostility, fatigue, sternness, or other unintended emotions, a brow lift is the most effective way of rejuvenating the upper third of your face.
How is it performed?
Over the years, brow lift procedures have developed from open techniques to more complex endoscopic methods. It will usually involve incisions into the scalp, but occasionally incisions will be made in the forehead and the upper eyelids. There are a few surgical options when performing a brow lift including, an open brow lift, endoscopic brow lift, or a limited incision technique. Each of these has their pros and cons, you and your surgeon should discuss these and come up with the best option.
What will my brow lift incisions and scars look like?
The brow lift incisions will be based on the technique your surgeon uses and will generally be placed so they are well concealed within the hairline or within a deep forehead crease.
What result can I expect?
The final result from surgery can be expected to be evident after around six months. At that time the scalp and hairline incisions will have healed completely and you should be able to see your more youthful appearance. Naturally, gravity will take its toll as you continue to age, but portions of the brow, especially areas like the frown lines may only return mildly over the years and should never be as severe again. It is important to maintain a healthy lifestyle and maintain life-long sun protection to maintain the results of your brow lift.It is important to return to your plastic surgeon’s office for follow up evaluation at prescribed times and whenever you have any questions about your brow lift healing and results.
- Repositions a low or sagging brow that hangs over the upper eyelid.
- Raises the eyebrows to a more alert and youthful position.
- Only a highly experienced board certified plastic surgeon can determine if this procedure will achieve your goals.
- Choice of brow lift technique is very important to the outcome so this procedure is very physician dependent.
- You may also need blepharoplasty (eyelid surgery) as a forehead lift does not improve baggy eyelids.
After your procedure, your surgeon will suggest you apply cold packs around the eyes to reduce swelling and you should try to sleep with your head and back elevated for at least a week afterwards to help with this. Your surgeon will probably ask you to return to their office a day or two after surgery to evaluate your healing.
Extreme pain is not typically a problem in brow lifts, although there will be some tightness and discomfort from ear to ear and across the top of the head. You will be offered pain medication should you require it. Drains are not usually necessary for a brow lift.
It is common to experience some bruising, swelling and numbness on the first night after your surgery, which will peak over the next seventy-two hours, subsiding within 5-7 days. As your body balances itself, you should drink plenty of fluid so your body can flush any toxins and release any extra water gained during surgery.
It is common for bruising from a brow lift to appear more in the surrounding areas than in the brow itself and any bleeding that occurs will tend to collect below the eyelids. This will peak between days 3 and 5 and should resolve itself fully within three weeks. You will normally be allowed to bathe the day after surgery, but you should exercise caution when using hot water, combs, brushes or hair dryers as your scalp will still be numb and you could damage your hair or skin without noticing.
It is essential you follow all patient care instructions given to you by your physician. This will usually include information about which compression garments to wear, how to take care of your drains, how to take any antibiotics or painkillers, if prescribed and the level of activity that is safe for you to undertake.
Your surgeon will also provide detailed instructions about the normal symptoms and how to spot any signs of complications. It is important to realize everyone’s body is different and so the amount of time it takes to recover varies between individuals. Any staples or sutures you may have will be removed within a week of surgery.
During this first week, you should aim to be mildly active to help with circulation in your lower limbs, but do not attempt any strenuous activity or heavy lifting. You may be able to return to work within a week and to full activity, like driving, within a few weeks, provided you are not on any medications.
Sensation lost during surgery will begin to return over the first few weeks and your scalp will feel ‘itchy’ as these nerves reawaken. It is usual for total numbness behind the incision in an open brow lift to persist for nine to twelve months after surgery and in rare instances even longer.
One month following surgery
Depending on your anatomy and the amount of physical exertion required to perform your duties, you should have returned to your normal working rhythm by the end of the first month. You may begin exercise and workout routines, but should still avoid activities that cause you discomfort until you are more fully recovered.
Limits & Risks
Fortunately, significant complications from brow lift surgery are infrequent. This surgery is usually performed without any major problems. Risks and potential complications of surgery should be discussed during your consultation. You can minimize the risk to you by carefully following the instructions and advice of your plastic surgeon before and after your cosmetic surgery procedure. The risks in most surgeries are similar.
Some potential complications of all surgeries are:
- Adverse reaction to anaesthesia
- Hematoma or seroma (an accumulation of blood or fluid under the skin that may require removal)
- Infection and bleeding
- Changes in sensation
- Allergic reactions
- Damage to underlying structures
- Unsatisfactory results that may necessitate additional procedures.
- Blood clots in your legs or lungs