Question : There seem to be many different facelift techniques: the deep plane lift, the S lift, the SMAS lift, etc. Can you describe the main differences between these many different techniques and which are considered best?
Answer : There are many different facelift techniques. In order to understand the facelift, it is important to understand the basic anatomy and the theory behind the facelift procedure. The facelift is a rejuvenation procedure. The skin is elevated off the underlying tissues and various techniques are done to address the underlying tissues to tighten and reposition these tissues. After this is done, the skin is gently re-draped over the face. The real difference between facelifts is the type and length of incision used and the plane of the dissection of the surgery for deeper tissues. The S-lift refers to a type of lift where a smaller incision is used. The deep plane facelift refers to a technique where the deeper tissues of the face are repositioned. It is more extensive than the standard lift. The SMAS lift refers to the area of thick fibromuscular tissue which is tightened to try and achieve the best result. It is impossible to say which technique is the best. It is important that the surgeon be able to adapt the technique to the patient, using the most appropriate technique for the most appropriate patient. In general, shorter facelift incisions are quicker, have a quicker recovery time and are more cost effective. More extensive facelift incisions and deeper dissections may lead to longer facelift results.