If there’s one thing that advances in medicine and pharmaceuticals have brought us, it’s choice. The array of products on the shelf (and as a prescription) that purport to have a visible effect on anything from fine lines and wrinkles to crow’s feet and descending eyebrows is quite overwhelming.
In fact, the manufacturers almost seem convinced that surgical interventions such as a facelift are unnecessary in reducing the appearance of all the features we associate with the aging process:
• hollowing of the mid-face
• sagging skin, especially around the neck
• development of jowls
• wrinkles, lines, and a permanent frown
It is true that there are some products that can help with most of the above. Botox, for example, does a good job of reducing frown lines, with the drawback that it’s not permanent, and involves partial paralysis of the underlying muscles. Fillers, too, can be used to plump up the area around fine lines, thus reducing their appearance.
These are solutions for younger patients, for whom the underlying muscular structure is still sound, and the skin still relatively elastic, but for those in their 40s, gravity and the natural aging process have been at work to contribute to the overall appearance of the aging face.
Complete Treatment of Contributing Factors
A deep-plane facelift carried out by Dr. Bustillo addresses all the factors that contribute to the signs of aging in the patient’s face:
• repositioning of the platysma muscle
• elevation of the facial muscles
• repositioning of the malar fat pad (cheek)
• excess fat and skin removed
In addition, Dr. Bustillo may also recommend a number of important non-surgical procedures to help address the condition of the skin. Aging skin becomes lax, and surgery cannot tackle this issue, so certain skin-tightening procedures may help patients. However, on their own, these will not yield the kind of results that a combination of non-invasive and invasive treatments can produce.
No Visible Scarring
Another oft-repeated reason for avoiding a facelift and opting for a combination of Botox, fillers, and other non-surgical solutions is that the scars will give away the secret to the youthful good looks enjoyed by the patient. However, Dr. Bustillo prides himself on producing a natural look in which there is no visible evidence of scarring to the casual observer.
The usual cause of visible scarring is due to the stretching of the skin, so making sure that the scars are not visible is a combination of subtle placement and resisting the urge to over-stretch the skin. When the skin is over-stretched, it causes the scar to heal poorly and become wider; even a well-placed incision is visible if it doesn’t heal without being pulled apart.
Of course, surgeons could just hide the scar behind naturally falling hair. But what happens if the patient wants to wear her hair up? Dr. Bustillo uses the post-tragal incision to ensure that even with a person’s hair up, said patient will have no visible scarring.
This attention to detail also means that the ears retain their natural shape, which is another fear people have prior to undergoing facelift surgery. Again, in cases where the ear has changed shape, it can usually be attributed to over-stretching the skin, or poor choice of location for the incision. These lead to deformities, such as the so-called “Pixie Ear,” where the lobe becomes connected to the facial skin, and pulled down due to excessive tension on the closed incision, which leads to poor scar formation.
With all the care and attention that Dr. Bustillo and his team devote to every patient, there are very few reasons not to consider taking the surgical route to facial rejuvenation. It is true that, in some cases, the effects of the aging process can be mitigated by judicial use of fillers, and non-surgical techniques. But at some point, it will become necessary to treat the underlying causes; namely the muscle and tissue structure under the skin.
That’s where the facelift comes into its own.
If you are considering a facelift, Dr. Bustillo can be contacted through his practice at 305-663-3380, or via the website. Initially, a first consultation will be planned in order to ascertain the patient’s goals and expectations. This consultation will use advanced computer imaging techniques to illustrate the likely outcome. For examples of Dr. Bustillo’s previous work, prospective patients are encouraged to review the facelift photogallery on the website.