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Platysmaplasty or Neck Lift: Your Ultimate Guide

Platysmaplasty is a cosmetic procedure that changes the appearance of your neck. Sometimes referred to as a “neck lift,” platysmaplasty involves removing excess skin or fat around the neck. Read on for everything you need to know about platysmaplasty.

Reasons for undergoing platysmaplasty  

The platysma muscle runs from your upper chest and shoulders, crossing your collarbone and runs upwards along the front and sides of your neck. As you age, your platysma shortens and thins, which can cause the skin around it to sag or wrinkle.

Some women turn to platysmaplasty, or neck lift surgery, to reduce the appearance of wrinkles or excess skin around the neck and give it a smoother profile. A contoured neck can help create a more youthful appearance.

It’s very common to have a fear of aging, but the truth is, our physical appearance changes as we age, and there is nothing wrong with that. The skin on your neck has nothing to do with who you are as a person. Developing a positive body image can make it easier to accept the changes in appearance that accompany aging.

If you’ve decided that a neck lift is right for you, continue reading to learn about what to expect from the procedure, including results and complications.

Neck lift: what to expect

Before undergoing platysmaplasty, you’ll need to meet with a plastic surgeon to discuss your goals and procedure options. During the consultation, your plastic surgeon will evaluate the skin and muscles around your neck to determine the best approach for improving its appearance. They’ll also take a detailed medical history and ask about: 

  • Current or past health conditions
  • Your family’s medical history
  • Your reasons for wanting a platysmaplasty
  • Treatment options or procedures you’ve already had
  • Alternative procedures that might work for you

If they determine that you’re a good candidate for the procedure, they’ll schedule your platysmaplasty.

Before the procedure, your plastic surgeon might recommend certain medications to take or avoid. Patients should not ingest alcohol or use tobacco for two weeks before the surgery. If you’re going under general anesthesia, the doctor may recommend that you not eat or drink certain foods before the operation.

Prior to the procedure, the medical team administers medications that provide sedation and analgesia. Alternatively, general anesthesia is used. 

Before undergoing platysmaplasty, you’ll need to meet with a plastic surgeon to discuss your goals and procedure options.

During the neck lift, the plastic surgeon will likely choose one of two possible entry points for the incision. With a traditional neck lift, entry is usually around the hairline, from the front of the ears to just behind the ears. From there, they’ll remove or redistribute fat tissue and reposition the tissue under the neck or tighten the platysma muscle. Sometimes a separate incision under the chin is necessary to perform liposuction and repair the neck muscles. 

The other possibility is to do a limited incision just around the ear. Because the incision is smaller and there is less room to move tissues around, the results might not be as visible as from a traditional neck lift.

If a platysmaplasty is performed in conjunction with another surgery, such as a facelift, the doctor may address the neck lift differently. Depending on the size of the incisions, the plastic surgeon might close the incisions with sutures or skin glue. The surgery can take several hours to complete.

The doctor will give detailed instructions on lifestyle modifications after the operation, as well as on how to keep the neck and dressings clean and dry to avoid infection and optimize healing.

Depending on the extent of the procedure, a drainage tube and bandages may be necessary after the surgery. The doctor will give detailed instructions on lifestyle modifications after the operation, as well as on how to keep the neck and dressings clean and dry to avoid infection and optimize healing. Follow-up appointments may be necessary to review the healing process or remove stitches. Pain, swelling and bruising should start to decrease after a couple of weeks. 

Surgical vs. non-surgical neck lift 

The process described above applies to surgical neck lifts. If you want a neck lift without surgery, there are a few different treatment options involving deoxycholic acid, phosphatidylcholine, or Botox.

These procedures involve injections of substances under your skin. Phosphatidylcholine and deoxycholic acid dissolve fat, while botulinum toxin (the ingredient of Botox injections) blocks nerve signals that cause your muscles to contract.

Another way to have a neck lift without surgery is by having a laser neck lift. A laser neck lift uses lasers directed in between the skin, subcutaneous fat in your neck and the platysma to contour and lift the area.

If you want a neck lift without surgery, there are a few different treatment options involving deoxycholic acid, phosphatidylcholine, or Botox.

For non-surgical neck lifts, you don’t have to be sedated or put under general anesthesia, which means the procedure might cause some pain or discomfort. Non-surgical procedures might not give as reliable results as surgical procedures and sometimes require a regimen of ongoing treatments to be effective.

The least invasive way to have a neck lift without surgery is to use anti-aging creams or wrinkle-reducing moisturizers, but the results aren’t as reliable.

Platysmaplasty results 

Swelling or bruising often occurs after a platysmaplasty. It could take several weeks or even months of healing before the results of a platysmaplasty are visible.

Typically, the plastic surgeon takes a picture of the patient before the procedure for comparison after recovery is complete. The results of platysmaplasty will depend on several factors, including: 

  • Overall health
  • Scale or scope of the procedure
  • Skin elasticity
  • Maintenance and care of the incision sites

Depending on the size of the incisions, the plastic surgeon will offer recommendations for reducing the appearance of neck lift scars. In some cases, the incisions might be small enough that scars will be almost invisible. 

Wrapping up

Platysmaplasty is a cosmetic surgery procedure that helps give the neck a more youthful appearance. Whether you get a neck lift with surgery or neck lift without surgery, think carefully about the reasons why you want the procedure and make sure that they’re for yourself and nobody else. 

https://www.plasticsurgery.org/cosmetic-procedures/neck-lift/procedure

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28027174

https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/treatment-tests-and-therapies/neck-lift

https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/otolaryngology/specialty_areas/facial-plastic-reconstructive/cosmetic/neck-lift.html

https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/wellness-and-prevention/double-chin-surgery-what-you-need-to-know

https://www.mayoclinic.org/tests-procedures/botox/about/pac-20384658

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6128158/

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/cosmetic-procedures/cosmetic-procedure-right-for-me/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21792777

https://www.plasticsurgery.org/cosmetic-procedures/neck-lift/results

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/cosmetic-procedures/cosmetic-procedure-right-for-me/

https://emedicine.medscape.com/article/1294301-treatment

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