A brow lift is a cosmetic procedure used to improve the appearance of the forehead, eyes, and brow regions of the face. Also called a forehead lift, brow and forehead rejuvenation can take years off your appearance. The plastic surgeon raises the skin of the forehead and soft tissue during the procedure, which eliminates creases across the forehead or between the eyes.
Candidates for a Brow Lift
You may choose to have a brow lift if:
You have loose, sagging forehead and brow skin.
You wish to boost your self-confidence.
You have creases across the bridge of your nose or between your eyes.
The distance between your eyelashes and brows is shortened.
You have an angry, tired, or sad look.
You wish to soften facial lines and restore a more pleasing, softer appearance.
Chicago Plastic Surgeon’s Consultation
Called the initial consultation, the plastic surgeon will first meet with you to evaluate your appearance, ask some questions, and take photos. The consultation involves:
Review of medical history – The doctor will ask you questions about your past and current health problems, discuss what medications you take, and inquire about allergies. You must hold any drugs that thin the blood for 2 weeks, so be sure to tell the doctor about all medicines and supplements you take.
A physical examination – During the exam, the doctor takes photos of you for the medical record. He will evaluate your facial bone structure, fat tissue, and contours, and assess your health status.
Discussion of expectations – The doctor will make every attempt to restore your look to a younger, fresher you. However, you must understand that it is impossible to reverse all signs of aging.
Before the Procedure
Before the brow lift procedure, you need to:
Stop smoking – Because smoking decreases blood flow in the skin, it will slow the healing process. Smoking also increases the risk of skin and tissue damage. If you smoke, you must quit for 6 weeks before surgery and during recovery.
Avoid blood-thinning agents – The doctor will advise you to hold blood-thinners for several days before the procedure.
Arrange for help during the recovery – You need to make plans for someone to drive you home after you leave the hospital, as the brow lift is done on an outpatient basis. Also, someone should stay with you the first night you come home.
During the Surgery
The brow lift technique your surgeon uses depends on your desired results, your bone structure, and your problem areas. The chosen technique determines the location of incisions. The options include:
Lateral brow lift – small incisions are made on the left and right sides of the head, behind the hairline. This allows for a rejuvenated look on the sides of the forehead for patients that do not have severe brow
Coronal brow lift – The incisions are made behind the hairline and across the top of the head, from ear-to-ear. With this technique, the overlapping skin is removed and skin is sewn back together.
Hairline brow lift – An incision is made between the top of the forehead and the start of the hairline. The skin and tissue are removed, which yields dramatic results and eliminates horizontal creases.
After the Procedure
After the brow lift procedure, your forehead will be taped and loosely wrapped to minimize swelling. A small tube is often inserted along the incisions site to drain excess fluid and blood. You need to rest with your head elevated, and take prescribed medications. Use ice packs to relive swelling and pain, and avoid exposing the incisions to excessive motion or pressure.
You cannot soak in a hot tub or sauna until sutures are removed, and may shower with your face facing away from the water. You will return to the surgeon to have drains and sutures removed in 3-7 days. During recovery, you can move about your home but should avoid rigorous activities.