Facial Plastic Surgery Innovations Lead to the Best Facelift Results

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Facelift plus blepharoplasty by Dr. Brian Machida

Anyone considering a facelift or other facial plastic surgery procedure wants the best results.  In Inland Empire, California where I practice, the hot dry climate promotes wrinkles and sun damaged skin.  Many surgeons offer facial plastic surgery, especially a facelift procedure in Inland Empire.  Wherever you are, how do you choose between many highly qualified surgeons?  Who can give you the best facelift?  When you’re trying to choose a physician, here’s something you’ll want to consider:

Famed educator and presidential adviser Booker T. Washington once said, “Success in life is founded upon attention to the small things.”  Some plastic surgeons always go by the book.  That’s certainly a safe course of action.  But the surgeons that get the best results follow established best practices – and always find a way to go a little further to help their patients.  Here are some examples of innovations I’ve found can add up to better results.  See what you think.


Editor’s Note:  Dr. Brian Machida is a highly experienced facial plastic surgeon. In his career he has performed more than 4,000 facial plastic surgery procedures, including facelift, neck lift, rhinoplasty and blepharoplasty in Inland Empire and Beverly Hills, California. Today he practices at STC Plastic Surgery in Ontario, CA. where he also provides nonsurgical cosmetic procedures like Botox, microneedling, fat grafting, fillers, laser and Renuvion.


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A safer facelift

Studies consistently find that facial plastic surgery is one of the safest procedures you can have.  In the few cases where problems have developed, it’s often due to complications with general anesthesia.  That can also be true with the popular I.V. anesthetic Propofol.

Propofol is popular with surgeons who perform facelift procedures in Inland Empire and Los Angeles, California.  Perhaps that is also true in your area.  Patients fall asleep and wake up quicker with this medication.  They often feel better after surgery.

However, as explained in “The Safest Facelift Provides Great, Natural-Looking Results”, Propofol’s benefits come with some serious risks.  This popular I.V. anesthesia can reduce your breathing rate.  Normally your heart would make up for this by beating faster.  But Propofol often slows your heart rate.  Many people encounter no problems using it, but some patients experience disastrous complications.  Blood pressure can dip below what’s safe.  Your blood oxygen levels can become dangerously low.  This appears to be what happened when Joan Rivers died.

This is why many states require that a licensed anesthesiologist or nurse anesthetist directly monitor any patient receiving Propofol during surgery.  This can drive up costs.  Fortunately, there’s a better way.

Dr. Malcolm Paul, MD, FACS, Past President of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery and Clinical Professor of Plastic Surgery at the University of California, Irvine called local anesthesia with oral sedation “the safest method available.”  I’ve performed some 4,000 facial plastic surgeries, including facelift procedures in Inland Empire and Beverly Hills using that method.

Safeguarding your Outstanding Facelift Results

There are two key factors needed for great results from your facelift or other facial plastic surgery procedure.  First, the surgeon must do a really good job.  And second, you must heal well.  A highly experienced, board certified facial plastic surgeon will often do technically excellent work.  But some patients who have outstanding procedures don’t get the results they want.  Often, they didn’t heal well enough.

After a procedure there are things you can do to improve your healing.  One, of course, is not to smoke or vape.  Nicotine reduces the blood flow you need to mend.  Another is to exactly follow your surgeon’s post-procedure instructions.  That often includes avoiding aspirin and other medications, supplements and even foods that can promote bleeding.  As this article in Medical News Today outlines, there are supplements like Vitamin E and Gingko Biloba that can thin your blood.  Even healthy foods like ginger and turmeric can act like aspirin and inhibit blood from clotting.  That can be great at other times, but not when you’re healing from surgery.

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Vacuum or Suction Drains

To help prevent fluid buildup from interfering with your great results, highly experienced facial plastic surgeons will send you home with vacuum or suction drains in place.  Archives of Otolaryngology – Head & Neck Surgery published a study of 222 facial plastic surgeries.  These were facelift procedures performed by the same surgeon using the same technique.  In 50% of the cases he inserted vacuum or suction drains.  In 50% he didn’t.

The results were striking.  Without suction drains, 37% of the patients developed seromas, pockets of fluid made up of blood plasma and liquids that seep out of injured cells.  But when the same surgeon doing an identical procedure used suction drains, only 15% developed seromas. A wise plastic surgeon will use suction drains to increase your chance of better healing.

Tranexamic Acid

Every board-certified facial plastic or plastic surgeon will tell you that you must avoid continued bleeding after surgery to heal well.  As mentioned above, stopping smoking or vaping and temporarily discontinuing medications that can thin your blood are keys to this.  I go a little further.

Tranexamic Acid is a medication many gynecologists use to reduce bleeding in women with heavy menstrual cycles.  It prevents fibrin, a key component in blood clotting, from being broken down.  After surgery, your blood will naturally clot so you can start healing.  At a certain point, your body will dissolve those blood clots.  However, if it happens before you’ve fully healed, you can start bleeding again.

To avoid this, I add Tranexamic Acid to the fluid I inject during your procedure.  It’s enough to discourage bleeding, but not enough to promote unwanted blood clots.  This is one more innovation highly experienced facial plastic surgeons may use to improve your healing and give you better results.

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Before and After Facelift by Dr. Brian Machida

Virtual Consultations              CONTACT Dr. Machida Inland Empire, CA 

During the COVID-19 pandemic, many people interested in improving their appearance prefer a virtual consultation.  In better times, some are so busy that not having to visit a doctor’s office to learn about their options is a real convenience.  At STC Plastic Surgery in Ontario, Inland Empire, California I’ve found that the Zoom platform works well.  It’s great if you’re using a PC or laptop or with certain smartphones.  FaceTime can work even better, but it’s not truly secure.

Never participate in a virtual consultation on public Wi-Fi.  Others might overhear your private discussion with your physician.  Nothing will ever take the place of an in-person consultation with your surgeon, but in difficult or busy times, certain facial aging issues can be correctly identified during a virtual consultation.  It’s often a good first step, particularly if you’re in the information-gathering phase of your decision on having a procedure.

Getting you the best facelift or other facial plastic surgery results

As we’ve considered here, great surgical technique is a key component of the best facelift.  But it’s clearly not the only component.  Facial plastic surgery innovations that promote better healing can make a real difference.  And making a safe procedure even safer can only make things better.

If you’re considering facial plastic surgery, you’ll want to find out what your surgeon does to ensure safety and promote better healing.  Getting the best results possible at an affordable cost is important.  If you’re considering a facelift in Inland Empire, California (or another cosmetic procedure) please feel free to contact me about an in-person or virtual consultation.

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Before and After facelift and laser resurfacing by Dr. Brian Machida

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About Dr. Brian Machida, MD, FACS

Dr. Brian K. Machida, MD, FACS is a double board certified facial plastic surgeon. He has an exceptional level of experience, having performed ( read more )

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