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Will a second facelift incision scars be very visible if the surgeon places the incisions in front of my hairline?

Q:

I am currently 40 and had a lower facelift and cheek fat injections three years ago.  However I have lost 25 pounds and whereas my body looks great, I've lost more volume.  I'm considering a second face lift and more fat injections.  My surgeon says he will need to place the incisions in front (right at) my hairline to avoid an unnatural hairline.  I am worried that scars there will be very visible.  Will this be the case?

A:

The placement of facelift incisions along the hairline is often a good idea in order to avoid displacement of the hairline, which would be more noticeable than the scar. Typically, the incision is made in such a way that hairs actually grow through the scar and help make it inconspicuous.

R.A. Baxter, MD

Richard A. Baxter, M.D.
Mountlake Terrace, WA

A:

Secondary Facelift Incisions -

I do a very large number of redo and secondary facelifts. We try to get elevation of the cheek, not backward displacement with all facelifts. One of the things I see all the time is a markedly elevated hairline. I also use a technique that really does elevate the cheeks. Therefore, I have converted to placing part of the incision under the sideburn and somewhat in front of the hairline to prevent this in primary facelifts and avoid any further elevation in secondary facelifts. When done correctly, this incision essentially disappears slightly behind the hairline, and, even if it didn't, would look much better than a displaced hairline.

R.T. Buchanan, MD

A:

Incisions in the temple area have become very common with FaceLifts. Properly placed and positioned hair will often grow up, through and around the incisions making it very difficult to identify the scar area. May I suggest you request to see photographs of your surgeon's work and other patients who have had FaceLifts to make your decision.

Best,

Gary R. Culbertson, MD, FACS

A:

Properly placed incisions at the hairline heal beautifully. The hair in this region may grow forward covering the incision or even through the scar further camouflaging the incisions. Worst case scenario, a few hair grafts can be placed in front or within the scar if visibility is concerning. The alteration of the temporal hairline is far more obvious and difficult to hide if too much of the hairline is displaced.

Look at photos of past patients or ask to speak with people who have had the procedure with the surgeon. Good luck and I hope this was helpful.

R.W. Kessler, MD

A:

Incisions at the hairline are very common nowadays not only on secondary facelifts but on primary facelifts where you don't want displacement of the hairline and sideburn. In our practice, we would almost always perform this on primary cases as well.

If proper planning is made, these incisions would heal very well and end up being very inconspicuous.

Wish you well.

R. Rosenstock, MD

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