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Face Lift St. Louis

A face lift (rhytidectomy) can improve sagging facial skin and loose neck skin. A face lift in St. Louis may be combined with a brow lift or eyelid surgery, depending on your desired results. Your face will appear firmer and fresher, giving you a younger appearance.


The incision is made along the hairline and around the ear. The loose skin is then pulled up and backward, and the excess skin is removed. The surgery usually takes 2-4 hours and is performed in an operating room.


Temporary skin discoloration, tightness and numbness in the face and neck. Also temporary bruising, swelling and tenderness.


Back to work 10-14 days. More strenuous activity after 2 weeks. Healing is gradual, expect several months for complete healing and optimal results.


$10,000 and up.

Price based on O.R. time used. Cost includes surgeon’s fee, hospital and anesthesia.


How the Procedure is Performed

Because of individual factors, not everyone will achieve the same results from a face lift. Your plastic surgeon will select the surgical technique that he or she feels will obtain the best outcome for you.

Where are the incisions placed?

Although there are many variations meto the facelift procedure, generally an incision is hidden in the natural contour of your ear, then extends around the earlobe and back into the hairline. Following surgery, incisions can be easily concealed by your hair or with makeup. There may also be a small incision hidden underneath your chin.

Through the discreet face lift incisions, Dr. Rottler is able to free the skin from the underlying tissues to the extent necessary for the particular surgical technique selected. After the skin has been pulled up and back, the excess is removed.

In some instances, the deeper tissues may also need to be repositioned in order to restore a more youthful contour to your face. If necessary, a small incision beneath the chin permits the removal of fatty tissue in that area and smoothing of the cord-like structures of the underlying muscle in the neck.

Understanding the risks

Fortunately, significant complications from face lifts are infrequent. Every year, many thousands of people undergo successful face lift surgery, experience no major problems and are pleased with the results. Anyone considering surgery, however, should be aware of both the benefits and risks.

You may be wondering how you can learn more so that you can make an informed decision. The subject of risks and potential complications of surgery is best discussed on a personal basis between you and your surgeon, or with a staff member in Dr. Rottler’s office.

Some of the potential complications that may be discussed with you include hematoma (an accumulation of blood under the skin that may require removal), infection and reactions to anesthesia. While plastic surgeons are trained in techniques for safely manipulating facial skin and tissue, injury to underlying structures is possible, though it is usually only temporary.

Face lift incisions are most often inconspicuous, but this is not entirely predicable due to individual variations in healing. You can help minimize certain risks by following the advice and instructions of Dr. Rottler, both before and after surgery.

How should I prepare for surgery?

If you are a smoker, you will be asked to stop smoking well in advance of surgery. Aspirin and certain anti-inflammatory drugs can cause increased bleeding, so you should avoid taking these medications for a period of time before surgery. Dr. Rottler will advise you and provide additional preoperative instructions.

If your hair if very short, you may want to let it grow enough to cover your incisions while they heal. If you are overweight and you have a realistic desire to lose more than 15 pounds, you should discuss this with your surgeon.

What will the day of surgery be like?

Your face lift may be performed in a hospital, free-standing ambulatory facility or office-based surgical suite.

Medications are administered for your comfort during the surgical procedure. You and your plastic surgeon will have decided in advance what type of anesthesia is to be used, either intravenous sedation or general anesthesia. For your safety during the operation, various monitors are used to check your heart, blood pressure, pulse and the amount of oxygen circulation in your blood.

When surgery is completed, you will be taken into a recovery area where you will continue to be closely monitored. Sometimes small tubes will have been inserted beneath the skin to drain away fluids that might otherwise accumulate, but you will not feel these at all. It fact, there is surprisingly little discomfort from the surgery. You will stay overnight in the hospital or surgical facility.

How will I look and feel initially?

It is important to realize that the amount of time it takes for recovery varies greatly among individuals. After surgery, you will be asked to restrict your activities and simply relax for a few days. Elevating your head when you sleep will help to minimize swelling and bruising. Remember, you must not take aspirin or certain anti-inflammatory medications, and you should not smoke or be exposed to heavy secondary smoke for a while.

Any bandages and drain tubes will usually be removed in one or two days. At that time, you will notice puffiness and discoloration which may be more pronounced in some portions of your face than others. Do not be alarmed by any unevenness or temporary asymmetry caused by this variance in swelling and bruising, which is perfectly normal.

Generally, the greatest amount of swelling occurs 24 to 48 hours after surgery, but it may take several weeks before all puffiness is resolved. Most bruising will disappear within two weeks. After a few days, you will be permitted to wear makeup which will help conceal any discoloration. You will also experience some numbness in the facial area, which may be present for several weeks or longer. Your stitches will be removed four to seven days after surgery.

When can I resume my normal activities?

Straining, bending and lifting should be avoided during the early postoperative period. In many instances, you will be able to resume most of your normal activities within two weeks and begin to exercise three to four weeks after surgery. You will be instructed to temporarily avoid exposure to direct sunlight and, for the long-term, to be conscientious about the use of a sunblock to protect your skin.

Results of Your Face Lift

The results of your face lift may be dramatic or subtle, depending on how you look before surgery as well as the specific goals that you and Dr. Rottler have established. Since the healing process is gradual, you should expect to wait at least several weeks for an accurate picture of your “new look.” Additional minor changes, or settling, may occur over several months.


Dr. Paul Rottler has the experience and skill needed to give you excellent face lift results. To find out more about the face lift in St. Louis, contact our office and schedule your consultation.