Neck Lift Surgery

Medically Reviewed on 12/29/2022
Neck Lift Surgery
A neck lift can help you appear younger by lifting and tightening drooping skin in the neck and jawline area

Neck lift surgery is a cosmetic procedure that reduces visible signs of aging in the neck and jawline. With age, skin elasticity reduces and the muscles loosen, causing the neck to droop.

Genetics, gravity, environmental factors, and stress can contribute to excess fat and skin laxity in the lower face, as well as muscle banding in the neck, which can cause jowls and result in irregular contours. A neck lift can help you appear younger by lifting and tightening drooping skin in the area.

At what age do you get a turkey neck?

Signs of aging in the neck can appear as early as your late 40s and are a common reason why people visit a plastic surgeon

A neck lift can address signs of aging on the neck, resulting in a younger, healthier-looking neckline.

Can a neck lift be done without a facelift?

A neck lift is always performed in conjunction with a facelift. Options include eye surgery, liposuction, and ProFractional laser treatments. 

Most people’ needs are typically not met with a neck lift alone. If the skin on the neck is sagging, the skin on the face is likely to be sagging as well. It is also preferable to have multiple surgeries during one recovery period rather than multiple treatments at separate times.

How do surgeons do a neck lift?

During neck lift surgery, anesthesia is administered. The incision made could be a typical neck lift incision or a lateral skin displacement neck lift depending on the degree of change desired.

Typical neck lift incision

  • A traditional neck lift incision often begins in the hairline at the level of the sideburns, proceeds down and around the ear, and ends in the posterior area.
  • Fat in the jowls and neck can be sculpted or redistributed.
  • The tissue beneath the neck skin is realigned, and the platysma muscle is frequently tightened inward.
  • Excess skin is cut, and the skin is rewrapped over the raised features.
  • A second incision beneath the chin is usually required for liposuction and muscle restoration.
  • Sutures or skin adhesives are used to seal the incisions.

Lateral skin platysma displacement

  • This is a new neck lift procedure that offers a faster recovery period and better results than the traditional neck lift approach, although it is more expensive.
  • The incision starts with a standard neck lift but extends far posteriorly.
  • Because there is no incision beneath the chin, there is no submental scar.
  • Sutures are used to tighten the platysma bands outwardly.
  • The procedure changes the muscle's structure, shifting it into a more lateral position and lowering the chance of recurring bands.
  • The scars are almost completely covered behind the ears and behind the chin. There are no scars visible in front of the ears.
  • This approach is adaptable and could be tailored to varied neck shapes with varying degrees of fat, skin laxity, and muscle laxity, with significant long-term outcomes.


Plastic Surgery: Before and After Photos of Cosmetic Surgeries See Slideshow

What are the complications of neck lift cosmetic surgery?

As with any procedure, cosmetic surgery carries some risk. You will be advised regarding early mobility and active engagement in post-operative care to avoid problems. Complications of neck lift cosmetic surgery may include:

  • Bleeding: Routine screenings and tests are done before surgery to make sure you do not have a bleeding disorder. The use of a tumescent solution before liposuction of the neck during a neck lift reduces hemorrhage. A hematoma or blood clot under the neck skin is treated by opening the incision and removing the blood clot.
  • Infections: Throughout the procedure, you will be administered intravenous antibiotics as needed, and the surface of your skin will be thoroughly cleaned. Antibiotics are administered after surgery to prevent infection. Because of these extra measures, infection following neck lift surgery is quite rare.
  • Open wounds: A neck lift involves the manipulation of a considerable volume of skin and the closing of skin under some strain. Because the incisions are put under stress, there could be some skin loss or a small wound opening behind the ears. This is treated as an outpatient procedure with dressing changes and wound cleaning. Typically, wounds heal quite well, and no additional treatment is required for well-hidden scars. Scar revision may be required in rare cases to improve the appearance of a scar.
  • Nerve injury: Some nerves in the neck can be damaged by the surgery, although the risk is low. Temporary loss of feeling from a shocked or damaged nerve may occur in rare cases. This may result in an uneven smile for a short period of time, but full nerve function usually recovers within days to weeks.

How long does a neck lift surgery take to heal?

If you undergo a single neck lift, you will remain bandaged for several days. You can expect some swelling after the procedure. Bruising and swelling are typically minimal. The neck may feel painful and tight, with mild to moderate discomfort that will be treated with oral pain medications.

There may be numbness around the incision sites for a few weeks. Bruising and swelling should go away in 7 to 14 days. Following the surgery, keep your head and neck still to allow for faster recovery. To reduce swelling, elevate your head when sleeping for the first few weeks. 

You will be able to resume light activities after 1-2 weeks.

Medically Reviewed on 12/29/2022
Image Source: iStock image

Neck Lift.

Neck lift.

Neck Lift Surgery.