The “lunchtime facelift,” or thread lift, is a faster, cheaper and less invasive version of the traditional facelift. As its name implies, the procedure uses threads (sutures) to lift different parts of the facial skin. Essentially, it hooks the skin and pulls it up. The procedure is often used by younger people, in their 40s, who are just beginning to experience the inevitable skin sagging that happens with age.
This procedure should be approached with caution. Like many fads, there is often more to the story. Because the procedure takes a very superficial approach, leaving the skin attached to its underlying tissue, there is a greater likelihood that the results will fade over time.
Research on thread lifts has confirmed this outcome. While the procedure’s safety has never been called into question, its longevity has; a very high percentage of patients have required additional surgeries. In some cases, the knots used in thread lifts have been visible. But the bottom line is the results just don’t last.
Traditional face lifts, or even “minilifts” take a different approach. Skin is redraped and knots are buried to prevent exposure, These procedures may have more recovery, but the results are far superior.
This Scripps Health and Wellness tip was provided by Salvatore Pacella, MD, FACS, a cosmetic, plastic and reconstructive surgeon at Scripps Clinic in San Diego.