With age, the forehead becomes slack and this often causes the eyebrows to drop. This gives the eyes a more aged appearance and causes skin excess in the upper eyelids. The process can be reversed by surgery.
If you’re considering a brow lift
Traditionally, the forehead was tightened by carrying out an operation which left a long scar in the scalp extending from ear to ear.
Although this procedure is still performed sometimes, it has been largely surpassed, especially in younger patients, by the endoscopic face lift.
A five-day course of Arnica tablets is recommended before surgery.
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Preparing for your surgery
You will be given specific instructions on how to prepare for surgery, including guidelines on eating and drinking, smoking, and taking or avoiding medication. Carefully following these instructions will help your surgery go more smoothly. If you smoke, it is important to stop at least a week or two before and after surgery; smoking inhibits blood flow to the skin and can interfere considerably with healing.
If your hair is very short, you might want to let it grow out before surgery so that it is long enough to hide the scars while they heal.
You should arrange for someone to drive you home after your surgery and to help you out for a day or two if needed.
A forehead lift is performed as an inpatient in hospital under general anaesthetic for most patients.
A five day course of Arnica tablets is recommended immediately prior to surgery.
Clinical photographs will be taken before your operation.
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In this operation an incision is made in both temples and two small incisions made vertically on the top of the scalp just behind the hairline.
Endoscopic or keyhole surgery can then be performed by inserting an endoscope so that the muscles can be freed and the vessels and nerves identified. It is then possible to lift the forehead tissues and weaken the muscle in such a way as to reduce the frown lines and prevent the muscles from pulling the brows down again. The new forehead position is then stabilised, usually by inserting very tiny screws which support the deep tissues.
This operation is usually performed under general anaesthetic and most patients stay in for one night although it can be performed as a day case.
Bruising and swelling can occur, especially around the eyes, and this may take two weeks to clear. Initially the forehead feels rather numb and may feel a little immobile.
Permanent loss of feeling is unusual but can happen if nerve damage occurs during the dissection. As with a face lift, nerve damage can also occur which can reduce or abolish movement of the brow or one side of the forehead; but this is uncommon.
If you decide to have an endoscopic forehead lift, I will explain the techniques and anaesthetic I will use, the type of facility where the surgery will be performed, and the risks and costs involved. Please ask any questions you may have, especially those regarding your expectations and concerns about the results.
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Following surgery, the pain is usually quite mild and will be lessened with medication. It is advisable to sleep using extra pillows, keeping the head elevated until the swelling reduces. You will be able to shampoo your hair on the day following surgery but you should take the week following surgery easy and avoid strenuous activity. It is better to avoid vigorous exercise for six weeks. You must understand that in the early stages when your forehead is swollen it will look and feel rather strange.
Scars are hidden by your hair and you will be able to disguise and cover them quite easily.
Most bruising and swelling will have resolved in two weeks, although minor puffiness may take longer to disappear before you are able to enjoy the completed result.
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