The eyebrows and the shape of the brow ridge itself are extremely important parts of the overall facial architecture. Not only do they channel sweat, rain, and moisture away from the eyeballs so that your vision stays clear, but they are also essential for nonverbal communication. Scientists who study facial expressions say that the eyebrows play a fundamental role in expressing happiness, surprise, and anger, and because they are the focus of so much attention, they are also one of the first places that people notice the signs of facial aging. As the natural elasticity of the skin begins to lessen, age and gravity can cause the forehead and brow region to sag and droop, creating a heavy, hooded appearance and contributing to the development of deep horizontal wrinkles across the forehead. Repeated facial movements can even make these wrinkles appear worse, and cause vertical marks, called frown lines, to form between the eyebrows. Fortunately, a brow lift, or forehead lift, may be able to help alleviate many of these concerns. Here are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about this extremely common and effective plastic surgery procedure.
Exactly what can a brow lift do?
A brow lift is specifically designed to address the ptosis, or natural sagging, that can affect the forehead. By gently lifting the skin and repositioning the underlying tissue, it makes the entire area look less heavy and may even help improve the appearance of wrinkle lines that can develop in this region, including the horizontal wrinkles that result from the loss of skin elasticity as well as the vertical frown lines that repeated facial movements can cause between the eyes. Unfortunately, even though procedures like a brow lift can effectively turn back the clock, they cannot stop the aging process entirely. Both gravity and repeated facial animation can frequently cause brow wrinkles and ptosis to return, and so maintenance procedures like Botox® injectable cosmetic treatments may be necessary in order to preserve your brow lift results and keep you looking your best.
Can a brow lift be done at the same time as eyelid surgery?
Absolutely! Eyelid surgery, or a blepharoplasty, is a very precise plastic surgery procedure that removes excess sagging skin and fat deposits from the upper and/or lower eyelids, giving the eyes a refreshed and rejuvenated look. The important thing to keep in mind is that the brow needs to be in its proper position before the eyelids are done. Otherwise you can actually make the eyes appear smaller. More than twenty-five years as a double board certified facial plastic surgeon has given me the experience with facial musculature necessary to combine blepharoplasty with brow lift procedures and achieve the most natural looking results.
What is an endoscopic brow lift and what are its benefits?
Traditionally, a brow lift was performed by making a surgical incision across the top of the head, from ear to ear, and then lifting the excess, sagging skin upward. However, this long incision can cause unsightly scarring and even damage hair follicles, compromising the growth of hair along the scar line and potentially making the resulting scar even more visible. During a brow lift procedure, I avoid making a single long coronal incision and instead use a handful of tiny, less-detectable incisions hidden within the hairline. By using an advanced endoscopic “key-hole” technique, it is possible to adjust the tissue and muscle beneath the skin using only a thin tube fitted with a camera and special instruments. In either case, brow lift surgery can relieve the heaviness of the forehead while lifting and smoothing the entire eyebrow area.
Every patient is unique and every face ages differently, and I would welcome you to contact my office to schedule a consultation so that we can determine what facial rejuvenation procedures are right for you. If you are interested in a brow lift or in any of the other facial plastic surgery procedures that I perform, find out more by connecting with me, Dr. Fernando Burstein, on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ for the latest facial plastic surgery news.