Facelift (“Rhytidectomy”)


To improve sagging facial skin, jowls and loose neck skin by removing excess fat, tightening muscles and re-draping skin. Most often done on men over 40. Face Lift surgery can be performed with eyelid surgery, liposuction of chin and endoscopic forehead lift.

Duration of procedure:

4 – 5 hours.


General anaesthetic.

In/Out patient:

Usually out-patient. More extensive surgery may require overnight stay.


Temporary bruising, swelling, numbness and tenderness of skin; tight feeling, dry skin.


Back to work: 10 – 14 days. More strenuous activity: 2 weeks or more.


2 – 3 weeks. Must limit exposure to sun for several months.


The jaw-line, profile and removal of jowls greatly improves definition of the face. Results last 7 – 10 years.

Before/After Images:

Due to new regulations, I have had to temporarily remove the sample pictures.

Facelift in Cape Town

A facelift is an operation in which the loose muscles of the face and neck are tightened, the skin re-draped and the excess trimmed off to provide an improvement in facial contour. It is a procedure done to give a rejuvenated appearance and is beneficial whenever there is excessive sagging of facial and neck skin. It is never possible to remove all the folds of the skin nor eliminate all the wrinkles. Only as much skin will be removed as is safely possible. Occasionally additional procedures may be done at the same time as a face Lift, such as eyelid surgery, neck surgery or a brow lift. Laser skin resurfacing of certain areas can also be done concurrently. These options would all be discussed in full pre-operatively.

Here are some frequently asked questions about facelifts:

Is major surgery required?

A facelift is a major surgical procedure, which takes approximately three hours. It may be performed under either a local anaesthetic with sedation or a full anaesthetic. To minimise swelling, drainage tubes are placed beneath the neck skin after the operation. These will be removed after 24/48 hours. After the operation there will be swelling of the face / neck and possible bruising of the eyelids. This bruising will be most noticeable on the second and third days and diminishes from between one to six weeks after surgery although this depends on your type of skin, age and healing ability.

When may normal activities be resumed?

You may either go home on the same day of the operation, if fully awake, or may spend the night in hospital. You will not be allowed to drive so should make arrangements for someone to fetch you. You should also arrange for a responsible adult to spend the first 24 – 72 hours with you at home after surgery. Alternatively, a stay at a medical recuperation facility is advisable. Social activity should be limited for about 10 to 20 days and strenuous activities are to be avoided for two to six weeks when all bruises have faded and there is no discomfort. It is better to avoid any physical activity. You may shower by the second day ( after the drains have been removed) but care must be taken not to ‘fiddle’ with the wounds. Most patients, wearing light make-up, can return to work or their normal activities after about seven days.

How long does a facelift last?

This is impossible to state for a given individual, as there are many factors involved.
The type of skin you have, the degree of pre-existing sun damage, your age and aging rate all bear an influence on the eventual outcome of a facelift.

An individual’s healing ability, changes in weight, smoking history and general state of health are also determining factors.
A facelift cannot retard the rate of the aging process, whilst ‘turning back the clock’.

Most patients have sufficient improvement following a facelift to keep them looking younger than their contemporaries forever and it is possible to have another facelift in later years to maintain a more youthful appearance.

What are the possible complications?

Although complications and bad results are uncommon with this type of operation, they do sometimes occur.
It is not possible to list all potential complications.

The commonest acute complication is haematoma formation, which is due to bleeding within the first 48 hours postop.
This is more common in hypertensive patients (High Blood Pressure), smokers or patients taking certain blood thinners / anti-inflammatories preoperatively.

The haematoma requires immediate drainage and delays the healing by a week or two.
Dr Jedeikin will give you a “precautionary list” of medications, which ought be stopped preoperatively.
Other complications include blistering of the skin which may result in scarring; infection; bleeding; unequal discolouration and swelling of the face; abnormal contour of the face; nerve damage causing temporary or permanent loss of feeling in the face and weakness in facial muscles. Very occasionally, some of these complications may require further surgery.

Certain complications, particularly blistering and skin loss around the ears are seen more frequently in smokers. Patients who smoke are urged not to smoke for four week before and after surgery to minimise the likelihood of complications.

Will I be scarred?

Although the surgical scars are permanent, the incisions are placed so that they are barely discernable. The exact position of the scars will be discussed at your consultation.

What are the costs?

There are three costs involved, which will be discussed in advance – the surgical fee, the facility fee and the anaesthetic fee.

Once you decide to go ahead with the surgery, a deposit of 10% (of the global fee) will be called for.

This deposit will secure your date, and a preoperative consultation will be scheduled at no charge.

How should I prepare for my operation?

You will be given strict preoperative instructions at the time of your preoperative visit.

You will need to shampoo your hair the night before and morning before your surgery.
You should not eat or drink after midnight prior to the day of surgery.

You will be given two sedative pills – one to take the night before surgery and the other to take the morning before leaving home to relieve normal anxiety.

Because of this medication it is imperative that you make prior arrangements for someone to drive you to hospital.
Wear loose fitting clothing, which is easy to remove.

Do not wear any make-up or facial moisturisers to hospital.

What care is necessary after the operation?

A facelift is a delicate, extensive operation. The fine suturing of the deep muscle layer must be protected from rupturing in the first two weeks. Sudden jerks or moves may cause the innermost stitches to pull free and so compromise the long-term result. You will be asked to adhere to the following restrictions after the operation:
  • Do not remove bandages yourself.
  • Do not turn your head from side to side.
  • Do not sleep flat.
  • The head of your bed should be elevated to ensure you sleep comfortably. (3 pillows)
  • Avoid strenuous activity, getting overheated and sun-bathing for two to three weeks.
  • Report tight bandages and excessive swelling immediately.
  • Keep pets away from you during the early stages of healing as their hairs can contaminate your scars and cause infection.
  • Care should also be taken when drying your hair and the low heat setting should be used for the first two months to avoid inadvertently damage to the skin or hair.
Should you have any further questions, I would be happy to answer them.