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WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
A rhytidectomy, or facelift, is surgery to remove signs of aging, such as wrinkles, extra fat, and loose skin.
WHILE YOU ARE HERE:
Before your surgery:
- Informed consent is a legal document that explains the tests, treatments, or procedures that you may need. Informed consent means you understand what will be done and can make decisions about what you want. You give your permission when you sign the consent form. You can have someone sign this form for you if you are not able to sign it. You have the right to understand your medical care in words you know. Before you sign the consent form, understand the risks and benefits of what will be done. Make sure all your questions are answered.
- An IV is a small tube placed in your vein that is used to give you medicine or liquids.
- General anesthesia will keep you asleep and free from pain during surgery. Anesthesia may be given through your IV. You may instead breathe it in through a mask or a tube placed down your throat. The tube may cause you to have a sore throat when you wake up.
During your surgery:
- A large incision will be made near your hairline on the side of your forehead. It will extend downward around the front of your ear and circle behind your earlobe. Another incision may be made below your chin. Your caregiver will gently lift your skin and remove extra fat and skin in your cheeks and chin. He will also tighten the skin between your cheekbones and eyes.
- A drain may be placed in your wound to remove extra fluids from the surgery area. The wounds will be closed with stitches. Your caregiver may use glue to help prevent fluid drainage or bleeding in your face. A bandage will be placed around your head to cover your ears and chin. It will not cover your eyes, ears, nose, or mouth.
After your surgery:
You will be taken to a room to rest until you are fully awake. The head of your bed will be elevated to help decrease swelling. Your caregiver will remove your bandages to check for bruises and nerve damage. Do not get out of bed until your caregiver says it is okay. When your caregiver sees that you are okay, you will be taken to your hospital room.
- Pain medicine: Caregivers may give you medicine to take away or decrease your pain. Do not wait until the pain is severe to ask for your medicine. Pain medicine can make you dizzy or sleepy. Prevent falls by calling a caregiver when you want to get out of bed or if you need help.
- Antinausea medicine: This medicine may be given to calm your stomach and to help prevent vomiting.
You may bleed more than expected or get an infection. You may not be happy with the results of your facelift. You may have scars or hair loss. Your face may swell or parts of your face may droop. You may have large bruises caused by bleeding in your face and neck. These bruises can cause tissue in your face and neck to be damaged. You may have pain in your jaw, which may make it hard for you to open your mouth. You may have nerve damage that causes parts of your face or neck to be weak or numb. You may need another surgery to fix these problems.
CARE AGREEMENT:You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your caregivers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment.
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The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.