Heredity, stress, environmental factors, and the natural aging process can all cause youthful contours in the neck and face to deteriorate and sag over time. Sometimes, the neck muscles can experience the effects of aging before the face. Wrinkles on the neck, a double chin, and jowl lines can become prominent. 

Subtle, Yet Long Lasting Results

When the neck does not match the appearance of the upper face, a neck lift is often recommended to tighten the skin and create a refreshed appearance. Neck lift surgery—a platysmaplasty procedure—targets unwanted fat, skin laxity, and muscle weakness to avoid “turkey neck.” The result is a tighter, more defined, youthful-looking jawline and neck.

While neck rejuvenation surgery cannot stop aging, results typically last up to 10-15 years. The procedure is often combined with a facelift, but the neck lift alone can make all the difference for some patients.

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Is a Neck Lift Right for Me?

You might be a good candidate for neck lift surgery if you’ve been struggling with sagging skin around your neck and jawline due to aging. People considering a neck lift typically have at least one of the following concerns:

  • Double chin
  • Poor definition in the jaw
  • Wrinkled or sagging “turkey neck” skin
  • Horizontal necklines or “bands”

Individuals interested in this facial surgery should be non-smokers or at least be willing to quit smoking for at least three weeks before and after the procedure, as smoking can impair healing. Remaining smoke-free after the procedure will significantly extend the results.

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Neck Lift FAQ

How much does a neck lift cost?

How long does a neck lift last?

Can I combine a neck lift with other procedures?

How can I get rid of excess fat in the neck?

How can I prepare for neck lift surgery?

How much does a neck lift cost?

The cost of a neck lift varies depending on the complexity of each case. Neck lift costs may include anesthesia fees, surgical facility costs, medical tests, medications, etc. While the final cost of surgery is a crucial consideration, choosing a skilled board-certified surgeon is just as important.

How long does a neck lift last?

The procedure results typically last around 10-15 years. The condition of a patient’s skin, their skincare routine, lifestyle, and the natural aging process can all have an impact on how long the results last.

Can I combine a neck lift with other procedures?

Some procedures commonly paired with a neck lift include a full facelift, brow lift, eyelid surgery, and skin resurfacing. A chin implant, dermal fillers, or other treatments may also be recommended, depending on your specific goals.

How can I get rid of excess fat in the neck?

If you’re trying to figure out how to get rid of neck fat, then you have options. Some ways people reduce a "double chin" or fat in the chin and neck area include diet and exercise or cosmetic injections. In some cases, plastic surgery, such as submental liposuction with a neck lift, is recommended.

How can I prepare for neck lift surgery?

Detailed pre-operative instructions will be provided before surgery. Dr. Thompson may ask that you stop taking aspirin, ibuprofen, warfarin, and any other medication known to thin the blood.

He will require that you stop smoking as it slows healing and can promote further skin wrinkling. Quitting smoking (at least temporarily) is necessary for at least three weeks before and after surgery to ensure proper healing and to keep neck lift scars to a minimum.

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Your Initial Consultation

As with any procedure, it’s essential to feel comfortable and well-informed before you make your decision. Before undergoing surgery, Dr. Thompson will invite you for a consultation at his Denver plastic surgery office. This initial meeting is a crucial part of the process. It gives you and Dr. Thompson a chance to discuss your medical history, any skin conditions or tendency to scar, and other factors that may impact results and recovery time.

Dr. Thompson will take pictures and assess whether neck lift surgery is right for you. He may also recommend alternative procedures such as a mini neck lift or non-surgical treatments. If other complementary facial plastic surgery could help obtain a more favorable outcome, they will also be discussed at the consultation. Patients should plan to arrive at the consultation prepared with any questions they may have about the procedure or their cosmetic goals as a whole. This meeting helps establish trust between the surgeon and patient, so being open and honest is vital to help ensure the most successful outcome.

The Day of Your Procedure

The procedure with Dr. Thompson may occur in the office or an accredited surgical center in Denver on an outpatient basis. The process takes several hours but can be performed under general or local anesthesia. The type of anesthesia will be discussed during the consultation and depends on the patient’s goals. Several incisions are placed around and behind the ears, with a tiny incision underneath the chin. The platysma muscles are carefully tightened beforehand, and Dr. Thompson can remove excess skin and extra fat. Incisions are closed, and a dressing is placed around the patient’s head and chin. Immediately after surgery, the patient will be carefully monitored until the surgeon has approved that it is safe to go home. Patients must arrange to have someone bring them to and from their surgical appointment.

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Recovery and Results 

After surgery, it is common for the neck to feel tight and to have some bruising and swelling in the front of the neck. Bruising fades after about two weeks. Five to ten days after surgery, you will have an appointment with Dr. Thompson to remove the stitches. It is critical to take the proper amount of time to recover from neck lift surgery. Patients typically take about two weeks off from work, but more time is given if needed. Patients should avoid strenuous activity during these first few weeks, such as bending over or lifting heavy objects. However, walking around the house is encouraged to help with circulation and aid overall healing. 

Dr. Thompson will provide specific instructions for when you can resume normal activities and prescribe medication to help you manage any pain, swelling, and discomfort. Adhering to the surgeon’s post-operative instructions is crucial for ensuring proper healing and achieving the best results.

Why Choose Dr. Thompson?

Dr. Will Thompson is a Board-Certified head and neck surgeon with extensive knowledge of the intricate anatomy of the face and neck. But moreover, he believes in making sure each patient feels seen and understood throughout their journey. He’s well aware of the sensitivities accompanying such procedures and wants to ensure you feel treated with respect and compassion the entire time. 

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