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Difference Between Facelift Vs. Mini-Facelift

Posted: 6:00 a.m. Sunday, Oct. 1, 2017

By Anita Mandal, M.D.
Question: I have sagging skin in my face and neck. I would consider surgery, but what is the difference between a facelift and a mini-facelift?

Answer: A facelift typically involves more aggressive anesthesia as well as bigger incisions in front and behind the ears, temples and scalp as well as under the chin. Facelifts primarily target sagging of the lower face and neck as well as the vertical neck bands in the neck center.

As far as mini-facelifts go, there are many difference types of mini-facelifts and each surgeon may perform one or more different types of mini-facelifts or none at all, depending on the surgeon’s philosophy. Mini-facelift incisions are typically fewer and smaller than standard facelift incisions. The type of anesthesia used during a mini-facelift can be less or the same as that of a facelift, depending on the surgeon’s choice of approach.

Patients with severe sagging of the face, neck or both will most likely require a traditional facelift. Patients with milder sagging may be candidates for a mini-facelift, but such a decision can mainly be made after direct examination of your tissues. In cases without severe sagging, some patients also have the option of having Infini RF non-surgical skin tightening treatments which can be just as effective as surgery.

When patients have sagging combined with the presence of vertical neck bands, these bands can typically only be improved with facelift surgery. In milder cases with neck bands, Botox treatments can help delay the need for surgery. Injectable fillers such as Bellafill, the 5-year filler, as well as temporary fillers, can help sagging mouth corners and postpone the need for facelift surgery to improve this area.

Many options exist for face and neck sagging and range from surgical to non-surgical. Seeking a Board Certified Facial Plastic Surgeon who has extensive experience with the full spectrum of options is the first step in helping you to choose the most suitable approach for your specific needs.

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