The following is an example of the typical schedule involved with a Facelift with Dr. Frankel. Of course all cases are different and therefore this may not be the case for every surgery… is merely a guideline.
Prior to surgery some lab work will be requested and possibly a letter of medical clearance from your internist. Two weeks before the scheduled date it is important to avoid taking certain medications, vitamins and herbs that may cause you to bleed more than normal; a list of what to avoid will be given to you by our office. You will be directed to place a small amount of an antibacterial oniment into your nose for five days prior to surgery to help cut down on any potential contaminants.
It is also best to avoid alcohol and very salty foods for three days before surgery to prevent your skin from retaining fluid and swelling. After you go to sleep the night before surgery do not eat or drink anything except medicines with a small sip of water.
The morning of surgery you will have your own private room at the clinic where you will again have a chance to speak with Dr. Frankel about your operation. You will also meet your anesthesiologist. A family member or friend is encouraged to accompany you. After surgery you will recover at the clinic and then someone will accompany you home or to your place of recovery for the evening. Your caretaker will help your throughout the night with ice compresses, medicines, and any other related things. It is best to have your head elevated at all times. Ice compresses and occasional changing of the dressing will be necessary but otherwise there will be very little that needs to be done.
You will see Dr. Andrew Frankel the morning after surgery and your dressing will be removed and possibly replaced after examining the surgical site. If another dressing is placed it may be removed in two more days, after which you may shower and wash your hair.
You will look your most bruised and swollen on the third and fourth days following surgery. Facelifts are not usually painful but rather uncomfortable and most people no longer require pain medications after the third day. Over the next several days you are encouraged to take walks (out of direct sunlight) and to eat lots of calories and protein to help with healing. Avoid bending over and heavy exertion but otherwise you may return to work from home.
The sutures will be removed on day seven or eight but you will not be ready for social interaction for approximately two weeks from surgery. It is important to minimize salty foods, alcohol, and other behavior that results in swelling such as hot baths or inversions for three weeks from the operation. Hair may be colored at three weeks post operatively and full activity without restriction is OK at that time as well.