“I hate my turkey neck” is a common complaint heard by Dr. Butler, Dr. Patterson, and Dr. Leveque from both male and female patients. A neck lift can restore a more youthful-looking neck. It is often done in conjunction with a facelift. In many cases, a neck lift can be done in the office under local and oral sedation.
50-65 years old
The primary deformity in most patients seeking a neck lift are lax & separated platysma muscles, excess fat deep to the platysma muscles and excess neck skin. This causes the appearance of a sagging neck and a blunted chin-neck angle. A short scar neck lift is an appropriate solution for patients with minimal excess skin that will be adequately re-draped when the distance from the chin to the chest gets longer after the neck-chin angle is improved. (see image above). Other patients with more excess neck skin may require an extended neck lift or facelift.
The procedure is done through a short, horizontal incision behind/under the chin and facelift incisions around each ear. The skin is widely freed from the face and platysma muscles. Excess fat deep to the platysma muscles is sculpted under direct vision. The platysma muscles are then sutured to each other in the midline. If needed, the platysma muscles may be cut horizontally to achieve an even better contour. The neck and lower face skin is then re-draped and any excess or redundant skin is removed from the face-lift incisions around the ears.
To improve the appearance of the neck.
Office/Clinic, Surgery Center or Hospital
Patients should have well-controlled blood pressure, be at a stable weight and should not be using any nicotine-containing products.
Local anesthesia in the office/clinic. Or if you prefer we can also perform the procedure under IV sedation at a Surgery Center or Hospital; or general anesthesia at a surgery center or hospital.
Most patients go home after surgery and do not require a night in the hospital.
After a neck lift, you should sleep with your neck extended (head tilted back) for 2 weeks. This means no pillows. You may roll up a small towel and place it behind your neck (not your head).
You will be able to walk around, feed and bathe yourself. Depending on your pain medication requirements, you may not be able to drive or care for others. You will not be allowed to drive until you can quickly move your head without pain.
Walking After Surgery
You are encouraged to walk around as much as possible to help reduce the risk of DVT and thromboembolism.
Most patients shower 1-2 days after surgery.
Do not lift anything heavier than the Sunday paper for 2 weeks after surgery. Light exercises such as brisk walking at 3 weeks. No restrictions after 6 weeks.
Wait 2 weeks because you don’t want to increase your blood pressure during the early healing period.
Light office work and casual social events by 7-10 days. Wait 6 weeks before any major events. 3 months before any important photographs.
Swelling is usually worst around 3 days and then subsides. It may take about 9 months for the numbness and firm sensation to go away. 9-12 months for “full” healing.
Usually subsides by 1-2 weeks.
Risks & Complications
Hematoma, contour irregularities, infection, prolonged swelling, delayed wound healing poor scarring, hairline irregularity, nerve injury, need for revision, complications related to anesthesia.
Performed by: Dr. Butler, Dr. Leveque, Dr. Patterson
*Cosmetic Surgery National Data Bank: Statistics 2013. (2014). Aesthetic Surgery Journal / the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, 34(1 suppl), 1S-22S.doi:10.1177/1090820X14542571