What to expect when you opt for 3D lifting – risks and benefits of the procedure

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Image: © aleksey ipatov / Fotolia

This procedure is targeted toward the ladies with flabby skin or signs of aging in the middle part of the face, the chin, the neck and the forehead. It is a non-surgical procedure during which special stitches are placed on the skin to create a lifting effect, or an effect of tightening or reinforcing the soft tissues of the face. It is possible to perform the lifting procedure selectively or to a specific zone. The stitches are done with two types of thread – short two-way thread (APTOS, Feather Lifting) or long two-way elastic thread (Contour threads). Different threads create different results, for example – reinforcement or lifting. This technique can be used in combination with traditional open face-lifting surgery or endoscopic techniques.

Duration: About 30 to 40 minutes.

Anesthesia: Local anesthesia with or without light sedation.

Hospitalization: This procedure does not require hospitalization. Patients can leave the hospital right after the end of the operation.

Possible side effects: Temporary discomfort and pain in the area of the temples or behind the ears. Post-operative bruising and swelling is minimal. Some patients report difficulties in opening the mouth to a wider extent. Folds and bumps on the skin usually disappear in 2-3 weeks.

Possible complications: Bleeding during surgery which can lead to the formation of hematomas (pooling of blood) in the temples, infection of the stitches, granuloma (a reaction to the thread), tearing, displacement or unthreading of the stitches, localized pain if the end of the stitch touches the lower layers of the skin (in this case the stitch is easily located and can be shortened or removed). The overall risk of complications is no more than 15-20%, but all complications are minute and easily dealt with.

Recovery: Patients look good in 24-48 hours. On rare occasions the folds and bumps can be seen for a few weeks.

Results: This technique is excellent for achieving a temporary lifting of the face. The result lasts for 1-2 years, after which the stitches need to be replaced in order to retain the effect. This technique, as well as other techniques with temporary effect such as Botox and filters, should be approached with the right expectations, not considering the lessening of the effect with time as a failing. As with the other non-surgical procedures, like Botox shots, soft-tissue filters such as Hyaluronic acid or IPL, the rejuvenating effect may be huge but temporary.

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