Facelift Without Surgery
As Utah’s leaders in facial rejuvenation, Drs. Thompson and Henstrom perform 4-10 facelifts per week on average. But not all patients concerned with lower face and neck aging are ready for surgery or the downtime typically associated with surgery. We also see a number of patients desiring a more chiseled neck and jawline who are not yet candidates for facelift surgery.
For many years, both surgeons have been looking for a less-invasive option for such patients. After much research and discussion with top facial plastic surgeons across the country, they chose FaceTite, which delivers radiofrequency (RF) energy beneath the skin’s surface to stimulate collagen production for firmer, tighter skin. Previous RF devices offered limited results as they weren’t able to safely penetrate as deeply into the skin.
Unlike many other non-surgical devices on the market today, FaceTite is only performed by qualified surgeons to reduce possible risk and increase positive outcomes. This device allows our surgeons to provide a variety of treatments, in one visit, to help each individual patient achieve their desired outcome. Additional procedures that may be performed with FaceTite include AccuTite, submental liposcution, filler and Morpheus8.
At Utah Facial Plastics we perform hundreds of surgical facelifts every year, but not all of our patients are ready for surgery. They want a non-surgical alternative. We found that with FaceTite. FaceTite is a contouring procedure that also provides significant skin contraction.
The FaceTite system uses a cannula with an internal electrode that is inserted through a tiny incision. Attached to the cannula, but resting atop the skin, is a metal wand that features an external electrode. This is the same patented radiofrequency-assisted liposuction technology that debuted with BodyTite. The radiofrequency energy passes from the internal electrode to the external electrode, heating the fat and surrounding tissues without damaging those tissues. The liquefied fat is then suctioned away through the cannula. The RF energy that has heated the dermis layer of the skin causes the skin to contract and tighten, firming the area.
Prior to your FaceTite procedure at Utah Facial Plastics, we usually give patients a sedative and then add Pronox, which delivers “laughing gas” throughout the procedure.
The procedure is performed with only local anesthesia to numb the areas where tiny incisions are created for the insertion of the cannula. The cannula itself is very thin, about the size of a knitting needle. The treatment areas are injected with a tumescent solution common to modern liposuction. The solution consists of saline, epinephrine, and Lidocaine. This numbs the area, makes the fat easier to remove, and constricts the blood vessels for less bleeding and subsequent bruising. Then the FaceTite handpiece cannula is inserted. On the tip of the cannula is an internal electrode that delivers the radiofrequency energy below the skin to liquefy the fat. Above the skin on the surface rests the other portion of the handpiece, a metal wand that serves as the external electrode. This is important because it gives the RF energy a pathway upward through the skin from the internal electrode to the external electrode. This provides the skin tightening typical to RF treatments.
While the thin cannula is delivering the RF energy below the skin to liquefy and then suction out unwanted fat, the RF energy is also pulsing upward through the skin. This is the dual benefit of FaceTite.
As we age, the skin on the lower portion of our face loosens and begins to sag. This is a universal problem with aging, especially in the jowls. FaceTite is a good option for anyone with this loose skin who would like to tighten up their profile but doesn’t want to have surgery to do so. In reality, that’s pretty much anyone over age 45.
The one exception is if you’ve had any dermal fillers injected recently. If you have, you’ll need to wait at least two months before you should have FaceTite at Utah Facial Plastics.
Because FaceTite delivers many of the same results as a surgical facelift, it’s considered to be very safe because it doesn’t involve any of the possible side effects involved with surgical facelifts. The only invasive aspect of FaceTite is the insertion of the very thin cannula. Both the cannula and the external electrode are equipped with thermal controls to ensure patient safety and comfort.
Plus, the energy used, radiofrequency energy, has been used for decades with imaging such as MRIs and is safe and effective. RF energy is also used for many skin-tightening aesthetic treatments.
Dr. Scott Thompson and Dr. Douglas Henstrom, both double board certified facial plastic surgeons in Utah, have extensive experience in all aspects of facial rejuvenation. At your consultation, they will discuss your concerns, medical history and overall goals so together, you can come up with a treatment plan that is best for you.
Your Patient Care Coordinator will then provide a detailed quote on the procedure(s) discussed. They can also help facilitate the next step in the process and/or provide additional resources, such as before and after photos, articles, educations videos, etc.
To minimize discomfort, Valium is prescribed to take 20-30 minutes prior to treatment. Pronox, a device that administers “laughing gas”, is provided throughout the procedure to help patients relax.
Under local anesthesia, tiny incisions are made to insert a thin metal probe beneath the skin’s surface. These incisions are so small they don’t require stitches or leave any scars. This probe heats underlying tissue, which contracts and tightens. Patients are quite comfortable during the procedure and conscious enough to communicate with their physician and accompanying staff members.
- Short recovery time (3-4 days)
- FDA approved
- Penetrates deeper into than skin than other skin tightening devices
- Results can be seen within one week and continue to improve for up to one year
- Little pain and discomfort
- No stitches or visible scars
- Performed by experienced surgeons only
- Can be combined with additional procedures during the same visit
FaceTite can be used anywhere above the shoulders, but we recommend it for these areas of the face and neck:
- Nasolabial folds
- Under the eyes
Downtime is approximately 3 to 4 days though some patients may have some residual bruising that can typically be covered with makeup for up to 10 days. It’s best to take off at least 2 days of work and avoid exercise for one week.
A compression garment is given to wear all day for 3 days and then at night for 2 more weeks. This can be removed for short periods of time to shower, etc.
Visible improvement is typically seen around one week following treatment with 60-70% of results apparent by week six. Tightening and contouring will continue for up to 9 to 12 months post-treatment. Results can last up to 5 years but patients will not go back to looking how they did pre-procedure. While the aging process still continues, patients typically look better 5 years after FaceTite than had they not had the treatment done. It helps to maintain results with a good skincare regimen, sunscreen and a healthy lifestyle.
Improvement is typically 40-60% of what can be achieved with facelift surgery. It’s best to consult with one of our top Utah facial plastic surgeons to discuss all tightening solutions available and then decide what is best for you. It’s important to see someone who offers a variety of options, both surgical and non-surgical, who can provide honest opinions and recommendations.