1. What is a Midface Lift?
The Midface Lift addresses the middle third of the face, between the eyes and the upper lip. It is performed when a more subtle, but still very significant, improvement is needed. Although the goal of the Midface Lift, like the traditional lower facelift, is to rejuvenate the face, the techniques are very different. Both techniques are used to address drooping or sagging skin, wrinkles, and other signs of premature aging, but the Midface Lift is performed with minimal incisions that are hidden from view within the hair. In addition, many patients who qualify for the Midface Lift do not require significant skin redraping, and therefore have less swelling immediately after the procedure.
2. What is the difference between a Facelift and a Midface Lift?
The traditional facelift focuses on the lower face and neck, while the Midface Lift, as its name suggests, focuses on the central third of the face, or the cheeks between the eyes and the upper lip. The changes that occur with aging in this area include deepening of the fold between the cheek and upper lip (also called the naso-labial fold). Although part of the reason that this fold deepens can be attributed to age-related volume loss, sagging skin and underlying tissues also contribute to the tired, sad look associated with these lines. While the traditional facelift will improve jowling along the jaw-line, and some techniques, such as the deep-plane facelift, also pull laterally (towards the ears) along the cheeks and the midface, only the Midface Lift provides the ideal vector (direction) of lifting, moving sagging tissues in the midface back to their original positions. Because both the facelift and Midface Lift have different goals and address different areas of the face, they are often performed together to provide more complete facial rejuvenation. The best way to discover which procedure is best for your unique face is to schedule a consultation at the Chow Center for Facial Plastic Surgery.
3. Who is a candidate for the Midface Lift?
Ideal candidates for the Midface Lift have deep hollows beneath their eyes (and eye bags), with deep smile lines and a falling brow. In general, the midface area (the cheeks between the eyes and upper lip) begins to droop in the mid-thirties. This change becomes more prominent during the decade between 40 and 50 years of age. In order to counter the effects of this aging, the Midface lift restores the padding of the bony rim beneath the lower eyelid, also allowing for more skin removal (the wrinkled, lined skin of the lower eyelid) without eyelid changes. It can soften the smile lines by raising the cheeks to their more youthful position, and is performed together with an endoscopic brow lift to rejuvenate the forehead and brow at the same time. An in-depth consultation with Dr. Chow reviewing your aesthetic concerns will help you decide if this cosmetic procedure is right for you.
4. How do I know if I need a Midface Lift or a Facelift?
A large number of factors, including your age, your genetic disposition, the amount of sun exposure and sun protection you have had, your skin type, and your history of tobacco use can all affect facial aging. When aging has occurred in the lower face and neck, the traditional facelift or mini-facelift are useful for rejuvenation. The Midface Lift is used for rejuvenation in the middle third of the face, between the eyes and the upper lip. The best way to know for certain what is best for you is to consult with your facial plastic surgeon. Dr. Chow uses an endoscopic, minimal-incision approach to his Midface Lift. Don’t be afraid to ask questions during your consultation!
5. Where is the Midface Lift procedure performed?
Dr. Chow performs the Midface Lift at a fully licensed and accredited outpatient surgery center. You will be able to go home the same day as your surgery.
6. Do I need anesthesia for the Midface Lift?
Yes, the Midface Lift is generally performed with local anesthesia and sedation or with general anesthesia.
7. Where are the incisions for a Midface Lift?
This is an excellent question. Because this surgery is performed endoscopically, incisions generally measure about one and a half inches in length. These incisions hidden in the hair (your hair will not be cut or shaved) above your ears, with two far smaller incisions (again, hidden in the hair) higher up in the hair-bearing scalp. As he does with all of his procedures and surgeries, Dr. Jen Chow will use the smallest incisions possible for your Midface Lift.
8. How soon can I exercise after the Midface Lift?
Light exercise, such as strolling down the block or at the mall, may be resumed a week after surgery. More strenuous exercise should not be started for two to three weeks after your Midface Lift.