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Deep plane facelift: What does it address?

The deep plane facelift is an advanced surgical facelift technique that is designed to address the mid-facial sagging that often occurs as we age, in addition to sculpting and contouring the neck.  Not many plastic surgeons perform this technique as it requires a detailed understanding of the delicate anatomy of the facial muscles, nerves and vessels. 

As a double board certified facial plastic surgeon, Dr. Hessler, has spent her entire career focused on facial surgical procedures. 

The midface is an area that is often overlooked with other facelift techniques.  As we age, we not only lose volume in our face, but the tissue supports also relax and descend as well.  If only the lower part of the face is addressed during surgery, this can result in an unnatural ‘sweep’ look to the face and a disconnect between the midface and lower face.  It is this disharmony that will make one appear as though they have had surgery.  

In order to avoid these classic stigmata of surgery, the Deep Plane Facelift Approach is one of Dr. Hessler’s preferred approaches.  The Deep plane facelift allows the midface to be elevated in a vertical direction, creating a natural rejuvenation while adding the needed volume restoration to the cheek area. This allows the midface, cheek, jowls and neck to be treated and elevated as one unit for a harmonious and balanced look that looks refreshed but never ‘done.’  Dr. Hessler’s philosophy centers on the idea of replacing facial structures back to their original position while restoring youthful contours and proportions.  

Another advantage of the deep plane facelift is the tension and lifting strength is placed on the strong SMAS tissues and not the skin.  Tension on the skin can lead to poor scarring and this is avoided by placing the tension on the deeper tissues layers during the deep plane facelift approach.  

As a master of the IV sedation approach, Dr. Hessler is one of the few surgeons to perform the Deep Plane facelift with the safer IV sedation alongside the care of an anesthesiologist. Your safety is the priority and Dr. Hessler and the team take the extra time to assure the best experience for you. 

The deep plane facelift achieves the following:

  • Replaces the mid-facial tissues back into the cheek to create a refreshed and rejuvenated appearance
  • Creates more volume in the cheek from the surgical elevation
  • Achieves natural-looking results because the deep SMAS is used for support to avoid the tension on the skin, which can create a “windswept” look
  • Delivers long-lasting support and long-lasting results
  • Offers less bruising and swelling due to the deeper level of dissection

How is deep plane facelift surgery performed?

The deep plane facelift procedure uses incisions that are carefully tapered around the ear to minimize any visibility. Dr. Hessler is known for her attention to detail and the precision with which she creates her plastic surgery incisions. The advantage of the deep plane technique is that it uses the deeper SMAS layer for the strength and support, and therefore there is no tension on the skin. This, in turn, leads to more natural facelift results.

The deep plane facelift also elevates the mid-face, an area generally not addressed in traditional facelifts or quick lift procedures. Dr. Hessler performs her cosmetic plastic surgery procedures in a fully accredited surgery center in Palo Alto.

The deep plane facelift is performed with patients under intravenous sedation under the monitoring of a board-certified anesthesiologist who is specifically familiar with plastic surgery sedation. The degree of sedation can be tailored depending on your age, health status, and desires.

Can other procedures be performed with a deep plane facelift?

Facelift patients often choose to have other procedures performed to enhance their results. To address the eye and brow area, a brow lift or eye lift is often done to elevate the rejuvenation that’s achieved with a deep plane facelift. Dr. Hessler also often adds a stem cell fat transfer to the facelift surgery to create additional long-lasting volume to depleted areas of the face.

Deep plane facelift vs. mini lift

The deep plane facelift is an advanced method of plastic surgery that only highly trained plastic surgeons employ. This technique provides a comprehensive rejuvenation of the lower two-thirds of the face.

Is a deep plane facelift best for me?

Deep plane facelift surgery can be performed at any age, but it is most often performed in patients in their 40s and 50s, as this is the time when you see the ptosis or drooping of the mid-facial area and creation of lines and nasolabial folds on the face.

How do I decide?

It’s best to have a facelift consultation with Dr. Hessler to determine which surgical approach is best for you. At her Palo Alto plastic surgery office, she will examine your skin type, review any medical concerns, and discuss your lifestyle and recovery plans to develop a plan that is tailored to your needs.

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