A deep plane facelift is one of the most advanced facelift techniques available. It is a step beyond the SMAS facelift because the cheek ligament is also released during surgery, allowing for the cheek fat pad (malar fat pad) to be lifted into its more youthful position and improve the appearance of the midface. Like the SMAS facelift, this technique improves the appearance of the jawline, jowls, and neck ligaments, resulting in a natural and harmonious facelift result.
A Facelift Expert
The Piazza Center’s Dr. Antunes is one of a small percentage of doctors that perform the most advanced and comprehensive deep plane facelift, providing natural, elegant and long-lasting results. Surgeons who are familiar with this technique and understand the concepts of facial rejuvenation know that the deep plane facelift technique cannot be topped. By releasing the saggy soft tissues of the face in a deeper plane, Dr. Antunes can more comprehensively rejuvenate the face, creating balance and harmony along with a youthful appearance. Even the most dramatic changes in appearance can appear very natural when the appropriate technique is used. The deep plane facelift avoids the problem of the tight look of many other facelift techniques. The main principle of the deep plane facelift is that it elevates the tissues under the muscle layer, leaving the skin attached to the muscle layers, so it will not have any tightness.
The Deep Plane Approach
The deep plane approach involves repositioning all the saggy facial fat pads and soft tissues on the face that sag as we age. “Deep plane” describes the anatomic plane between the SMAS layer (muscle and fascia) and the deeper layer of facial muscles that are responsible for our expressions. The deep plane facelift focuses primarily on releasing and moving the fat pads instead of pulling and removing skin. Since the deeper facial muscle layer lifts to the facial tissues, the skin is not pulled under and patients never look “plastic,” unnatural or tight. The secret behind the deep plane facelift is releasing all the tethering points of fixation in the cheek, jowls, jawline and neck allowing for a comprehensive movement of the soft tissues and to remediate the effects of gravity and time. Without tension, the results will not only last longer, but appear more natural and have inconspicuous scars. By repositioning the soft tissues and facial fat pads, the deep plane facelift often avoids the need for volume replacement with fat or fillers.
Recovery after a deep plane facelift usually involves swelling around the repositioned areas for the first week. Because the deep plane technique is accomplished in a deeper layer, there is minimal bruising and minimal pain after the procedure. Deep plane surgery also creates less disruption of the natural blood supply to the skin allowing for more rapid healing. Deep plane facelift incisions heal with minimal to no visible scars because there is no tension on the skin – the lift is suspended in the muscle layer – allowing the incision to heal like imperceptible fine lines. The tension-free technique also prevents pulling down of the earlobe after facelift which can create a “pixie ear” deformity where the earlobes elongated after facelift surgery.