Face and Neck Liposuction
Facial and neck liposuction can produce very dramatic effects in the aging face or in younger patients with fat deposits. Liposuction is not a substitute for weight loss. Suctioning fat deposits on an over-weight person will create a deformity because the removal of fat will result in baggy skin.
Kybella is now an option for some patients instead of liposuction.
Although liposuction is a common term, the procedure is actually more properly referred to as liposculpture. The word sculpture indicates an actual artistic recontouring of the fat instead of just removing fat. Although excess fat removal is a positive change, taking away too much fat can leave unpleasant cosmetic deformities. Fat is not always the enemy and leaving the proper amount of fat under the skin is extremely important.
Liposuction, however, is an excellent means of removing fat deposits in individuals whom have genetic fat deposits or fat collections from aging. The most effective areas for facial liposuction are the areas under the chin and the jowls, which are the droopy areas that form on the sides of the jaws as we age.
Fat deposits in the chin, neck and jowls can be reduced with simple liposuction if the is not excessive excess skin. The picture on the right shows a Hollywood “fat suit” where latex is used to mimic the common areas of face and neck fat.
Small precision micro liposuction cannulas are used with a suction machine to remove the unwanted fat. The procedure is done through a small puncture hidden under the chin.
Dr. Niamtu uses a combination of surgical procedures when performing liposuction. Frequently a chin implant is utilized with the liposuction under the chin. This tightens up the loose skin and enhances the patient’s profile. In addition, Dr. Niamtu may elect to perform a neck lift procedure in which he corrects the sagging muscles of the neck to restore their youthful position. This is effective in improving the “turkey gobbler” deformity of the neck.
It is important to mention that if significant loose skin is present, liposuction by itself may produce disappointing results. For cases with a large amount of skin, a face lift procedure may be required.
Most of this surgery may be done in the office under local or IV anesthesia.
Depending upon the severity of the deformity, the recovery time for these surgeries is from 3-7 days. Patients wear a support head wrap to compress the treated areas. This is worn for several days continually and at night for 5-7 days.
The pictures below show a case of liposuction with simultaneous chin implant. Although there is significant improvement with a happy patient, the liposuction does not totally addresses skin excess. A face or neck lift would be required to totally address the skin. This patient, like some patients, wanted a change but did not want a facelfit procedure.
The above patient underwent sliding genioplasty (chin lengthening) and submental (under the chin and neck) liposuction
Submentoplasty is a procedure to treat the area under the chin and the front neck. It is more involved than liposuction but much less surgery and recovery than a facelift. This procedure is not for patients with significant skin excess. It is best for patients with moderate skin excess and areas of fat that may be hereditary or fat that is unresponsive to weight loss. This procedure is performed through an incision under the chin. Liposuction is performed, then the deeper fat deposits are reduced by direct fat removal. The neck muscle (platysma) is then sewn together in the midline which supports the tissues and slims the neck. A chin implant is also performed if necessary.
The photo below shows liposuction of the neck. Note the liquid fat in the tubing.
Liposuction is also performed along the jawline and in the jowl regions as shown below.
The photo below shows a golf ball sized of fat to be removed under the chin.
The photo below shows the platysmaplasty portion of submentoplasty.
The patient below had hereditary fat deposits of the neck that would not improve with weight loss. He is shown before and after submentoplasty and chin implant.
The patient to the right has a small area of fat accumulation under her chin that was treated with liposcution under local anesthesia. She is shown before and after the procedure.
The above images show a case of liposuction only to the chin and neck regions. Changes with only liposuction are not as impressive as facelift surgery but do make a noticeable difference.