Thread Lifts. People are talking, but what exactly is it? Thread Lifts have emerged because many people would like a facelift, but can't afford it or don't want the recovery time. Thread Lifts cost anywhere from $1,500 to $4,500. Some plastic surgeons promote it as a "lunchtime lift" or "weekend facelift” because it can be performed in approximately one hour.
Ideal candidates for Thread Lifts include people with minimal signs of aging. Most people who undergo Thread Lifts are women between the ages of 35 and 45. They choose a thread lift because they have begun to see more prominence of the jaw and want to tighten the skin under the eyes or neck. Many physicians combine Thread Lifts with other procedures for a customized approach to facial rejuvenation.
In a Thread Lift, barbed sutures, i.e. threads, are used to lift sagging eyebrows and eyelids, deep furrows between the nose, the corners of the mouth, and aging neck tissues. The surgeon uses a thin needle to insert the sutures under the facial tissues. The barbs on one end of the thread grab and lift the sagging skin, and the teeth on the other end anchor the skin to the underlying facial tissues. No incisions or stitches are required, and no scars are produced. Two types of thread lift procedures are currently being performed in the United States: the Contour Threadlift and the FeatherLift or Aptos Thread Lift. They are both approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
Thread Lifts are often performed in an outpatient medical surgery center or hospital. The procedure is minimally invasive so general anesthesia is not required. This allows the plastic surgeon to give the patient a mirror as the thread is pulled back, allowing them to give feedback. Usually an oral anti-anxiety medication, along with local anesthesia, is all that is required.
After the procedure, the surgeon will provide postoperative instructions that the patient must follow to reduce the risk of complications. These instructions may include an escort to drive the patient home and assist with daily activities for at least 24 hours. Also, there will be diet restrictions, i.e. only soft foods for seven days. Pain can be managed with oral medications and the surgeon may recommend elevating the head to reduce swelling.
The day following the procedure, the patient can resume non-strenuous activities. All normal activities can be resumed within seven days. However, one should plan on being uncomfortable in social situations for up to one week — three weeks for formal occasions. There could also be a lack of sensitivity or numbness in the treated area; however, this usually subsides within weeks of the procedure.
Selecting the Right Thread Lift Surgeon
Board-certified plastic surgeons typically have the most extensive knowledge about Thread Lifts. The surgeon should be able to advise the best treatment approach and expected results. It is important to remember that each case is customized to the patient’s needs.
Follow these steps when choosing a Thread Lift surgeon:
- Review credentials, education, training, the type of board certification held, and the number of Thread Lifts performed by the surgeon.
- View before-and-after photos of the surgeon's Thread Lift patients to help set reasonable expectations.
- Bring a photo of the anticipated results. The surgeon can help determine if this is a realistic outcome.
- Inquire about the type of equipment used, where the procedure will be performed, and the nature of the treatment plan.
- Ask about the specific technique that is recommended for the situation. Techniques may vary among surgeons and patients.
- Review the preoperative and postoperative instruction list.
Use the PrettyCity.com searchable database to find a Thread Lift expert near you.