Albany, New York: (518) 650-1076

Brow Lift

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On days when you are feeling well rested and content, does your facial expression tell a different story? Often, the forehead is the main culprit. A lined or furrowed brow can make a serene face appear upset or concerned. Frown lines between the eyebrows can produce an angry look. A drooping brow can create a perpetually tired or sad look. Men and women from areas like Clifton Park, Troy, Saratoga Springs, and Schenectady choose brow lift surgery at The Plastic Surgery Group for a more relaxed and refreshed appearance.

Cosmetic surgery should be a rewarding experience that leaves you looking great and feeling more confident. Request a free cosmetic consultationRequest a free cosmetic consultation with one of the surgeons at The Plastic Surgery Group or call (518) 438-0505.

Meet Our Surgeons

Meet the expertly trained Albany plastic
surgeons at The Plastic Surgery Group,
serving the Schenectady, Saratoga Springs,
Utica, and Albany area of New York.

Learn More Request Your Consultation

Meet Our Surgeons

Meet the expertly trained Albany plastic surgeons at The Plastic Surgery Group, serving the Schenectady, Saratoga Springs, Utica, and Albany area of New York.

Learn More  Request Your Consultation 

Overview

In our Albany practice, brow lift surgery (also called a forehead lift) is used to correct the sagging or low position of the eyebrows, soften horizontal creases across the forehead, and erase the worried or angry expression that can result from frown lines. This procedure is most commonly performed on men and women in their 40s to 60s. However, there is no age limit to the procedure. It can also produce good results for younger adults who have inherited stress-related conditions, such as low eyebrows or furrows above the nose.

Brow lift patient shown before surgery with drooping eyebrows and eyelid tissues, creases in the forehead and frown lines.

During your physical evaluation, your plastic surgeon will assess your bone structure and the underlying tissues of the face. The thickness, texture, and elasticity of your skin and the muscle activity of your entire forehead and upper-eyelid region will be evaluated. In developing your surgical plan, these factors will be considered as they relate to the position of your eyebrows, the amount of excess upper-eyelid skin and the height of your hairline. Sometimes, patients who are bothered by excess skin in their upper eyelids don't realize that a sagging brow is contributing to that appearance.

Your plastic surgeon may explain additional procedures that can be performed along with a brow lift to meet your appearance goals such as a facelift and eyelid surgery.

The Procedure

There are several variations to the forehead lift procedure. Your plastic surgeon will recommend the surgical technique that he or she feels will obtain the best outcome for you.

Small incisions for an endoscopic forehead lift, indicated by circles, at or within the hairline.

For a conventional forehead lift, an incision (indicated by dashes) usually is made across the top of the head, a few inches behind the hairline or sometimes along the hairline. Alternatively, some patients may be candidates for an endoscopic forehead lift, requiring several small incisions at or within the hairline. The number of incisions and their placement may vary.

One common method is the coronal incision technique. Using this technique, an incision is made across the top of the scalp, beginning above the ears and concealed within the hair. Sometimes, the incision may be placed at the front of the hairline. The incision is designed to be inconspicuous when healed. Working through this, your Albany plastic surgeon can modify or remove parts of the muscles that cause wrinkling and frown lines, remove excess skin, and lift your eyebrows to a more pleasing level.

The forehead skin is pulled upward and excess skin is removed.

The forehead skin is gently pulled upward, and any excess skin is removed. Some of the forehead muscles may be modified as needed.

In selected patients, instead of the coronal incision technique, a limited-incision technique can be used. One such technique uses an endoscope, a long, thin tube with a light on the end, which is attached to a video camera. The endoscope is inserted through several small incisions in the scalp and allows the plastic surgeon to see and work on the internal structures of the forehead. In some instances, a combination of endoscopic and other techniques may be used.

Another limited-incision technique can be performed without an endoscope. This technique uses incisions near the temples to lift the drooping eyebrows and upper-eyelid incisions to treat the frown lines. If your only concern is frown lines between the eyebrows or across the top of the nose, your surgeon may elect to use an endoscopic procedure, or to treat the frown lines using only upper-eyelid incisions – the same incisions that would be used for eyelid surgery. Some people require only BOTOX® Cosmetic injections.

Recovering

In the recovery area, you may find that a head dressing or headband has been placed around your forehead and scalp to minimize swelling. Sometimes, a small drainage tube is placed beneath the skin to drain away fluids that might otherwise accumulate and increase bruising. Discomfort is usually minimal, but any pain you feel can be controlled with medication prescribed by your surgeon.

Although people recover at their own rate, you can expect that your recovery will follow this general time line:

The first day

  • In this early stage of healing, you should rest quietly with your head elevated. One rule of thumb is to always keep your head higher than your heart.

Within the first week:

  • Swelling and puffiness, which may affect the eyelid and cheek areas, reaches its peak, and then begins to subside.
  • Bandages and drain tubes (if used) are removed and you may shower.
  • You may resume light activity.

Within 2 weeks:

  • Most of the bruising will disappear.
  • Stitches or clips will be removed.
  • You can wear makeup to conceal any discoloration.
  • You may resume many of your normal activities, including light exercise.

After 3 weeks:

  • You may resume more strenuous activity and exercise.
  • Swelling and puffiness will continue to subside.
  • Numbness and itching of the scalp will diminish as the nerves continue to heal.

Throughout the healing period, you should avoid exposure to direct sunlight and, for the long term, be conscientious about using sunblock lotion to protect your skin.

The postoperative patient with eyebrows elevated, unobstructed upper eyelids, and smoothing of forehead creases and frown lines.

Potential Risks and Complications

Each year, thousands of men and women undergo brow lifts and experience no major complications. However, it is important for you to be informed of the risks, as well as the benefits. One of the most important parts of your consultation is the discussion that you and your surgeon will have about the possible complications of brow lift surgery. In addition to listening carefully to what your surgeon tells you, be sure to raise any questions or concerns that you may have about the safety of the procedure.

Common Questions About Brow Lift Surgery

What should I know about my results?

If you're like most people who have a brow lift, you'll be very pleased with your refreshed and rejuvenated appearance. Although it may take several months to see your final result, you will probably agree that your new appearance was worth the wait.

A number of factors, including your heredity and your lifestyle, play a role in how long the results of your forehead lift will last. Remember, even though your "aging clock" will be turned back several years, that clock will continue to run. However, at any point in the future, you should still look better than you would have looked without surgery. Patients are usually happy with their appearance for many years following a brow lift.

How long will I continue to see my plastic surgeon?

After the initial healing period, you will return to your plastic surgeon's office for a post-operative follow-up visit so that your healing and progress can be evaluated. In the following months, your surgeon may ask you to return for periodic checkups. It's important to keep these appointments so that your surgeon can assess your long-term results and address any questions or concerns you may have.

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