The After Effects of Face & Neck Lift Surgery

Michele Elyzabeth post-surgery, no filter or photoshop. 

I recently underwent a face and neck lift with Dr. George Sanders, and while thinking that I was totally prepared for anything coming my way, I have to admit that nothing was further from the truth. In fact, I knew very little about one of the most important aspects of any surgery and that’s the after care. Since I believe that we can all learn from one another, I decided to share my experience, hoping that it might help someone who is considering these procedures.

I had prepared myself for months to be mentally ready for the surgery. I knew of Dr. Sanders’ work for several years, which made me feel very confident about going under the knife with him in charge.

dr. George sanders, Michele Elyzabeth, face lift, neck lift

Michele pre- Face & Neck lift surgery

I had asked several of my friends if the procedure hurt and was told it did, but that it was manageable. What I did not know was that the first day after surgery is pure hell; you wake up asking yourself; “Why on earth did I ever want to do this to myself?!” My face was on fire due to the heavy laser work around my mouth and under my eyes designed to remove the wrinkles. My head was ready to explode as the nerves had been agitated. Fortunately, I was scheduled to spend my first day and night at Paradise Cottage in Sherwood Forest, an aftercare facility owned by Norma where I received the greatest care. The facility, rightfully so, was highly recommended by Nurse Practitioner Karen House, the person that would follow up with me during the coming months. The second day was much better; however, I still had drains in my head on each side of my ears in order to prevent infection. I was pretty banged up. I looked as if I had met Mike Tyson in a boxing match the night before.

nurse practitioner Karen house, face lift, Michele Elyzabeth, dr. George sanders

Michele's first post-op visit

My bandage was removed and replaced by a lighter one which relieved the pressure all over my head. Several times a day I had to clean my face and neck with very cold distilled water, apply ice to my face and neck for 20 minutes at a time all day long for the first few days, while applying Aquaphor which helps with drying effects. The process is intense; you need to check your blood pressure every two hours as well as regularly checking your temperature.

One of the most important requirements is to make sure that your head is higher than your heart when you’re lying down.

nurse practitioner Karen house, face lift, Michele Elyzabeth, dr. George sanders

Michele's second post-up visit 

On the third day, after surgery, the drains were removed and I was allowed to take a shower, as well as make the first attempt to wash my hair. Speaking of my hair; it felt like wood and I found out after the surgery that they use surgical soap to keep the hair away from the face. That in itself is a major job. Instructed by Nurse Practitioner Karen, I was told to first use a considerable amount of conditioner, let it sit for 20 to 30 minutes, rinse my hair and repeat the operation if necessary. I had to do this three times and in the process, used 3 full tubes of conditioner before feeling my hair again. Along the way, I lost a ton of hair but I was not too concerned as I have been using Theradome and knew that my hair would come back quickly, thanks to the helmet.

nurse practitioner Karen house, face lift, Michele Elyzabeth, dr. George sanders

Michele's third post-op visit

A week later, I visited the doctors’ office and they removed my stitches and I made an appointment to return again seven days later to check on the progress. I was told during the visit that I should start using a hyaluronic cream to help hydrate the skin. Hyaluronic acid is a powerful hydrating ingredient found naturally in your skin, however, your skin needs replenishment to maintain its moisture levels, especially after this type of procedure. It was recommended that I use CeraVe, hydrating hyaluronic acid serum, which is a protective gel cream that replenishes the skin’s hydration. It helps bind moisture to your skin’s surface, smoothing it and providing up to 24 hours of hydration. It contains three essential ceramides to restore and maintain your skin's natural protective barrier, as well as vitamin B5 to soothe your dry skin. It can also be used with your own moisturizer. You may feel a burning sensation at first but it lasts just a couple of minutes. Six weeks later, the swelling is not completely gone but it is well on the way. I cannot determine the final results yet but I know I am on my way. I feel refreshed, the skin around my jaw is not sagging anymore and my neck really looks good.

I cannot wait to see the outcome. I will have a follow up visit on January 26th and will follow up with all of you!

 If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to send me an email:

Michele Elyzabeth, dr. George sanders, face lift, neck lift, before and after

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