Post-Operative Instructions – Facelift

  1. A responsible adult MUST drive you home and stay with you for at least 24 hours.
  2. The effects of the anesthetic may remain for 24-48 hours. You should remain in bed with help to the bathroom for at least 24 hours.
  3. Elevate the head (i.e. sleep in a recliner) to decrease swelling and bruising. Always keep your head elevated at more than 45 degrees during the day and while sleeping for the 2 weeks. May sleep on 2-3 pillows but make sure your neck is NOT flexed forward. Your neck should remain open as if you were resting your chin on your wrist with your elbows touching your knees.
  4. You may have liquids after surgery if desired. A regular diet should be enjoyed the day following surgery. Avoid very large bites (eg. Steak, large hamburgers, etc.) or any difficult-to-chew foods. Drink plenty of fluids. Avoid excess salt to reduce swelling.
  5. Take medications exactly as directed. ALCOHOL is strictly prohibited. It is important to have food in your stomach before taking medications. If you should become nauseated or develop a rash, please call the office. Resume regular medications unless your doctor directs otherwise. Remember, you will need to avoid ASPIRIN and ASPIRIN-CONTAINING products for two weeks after surgery.
  6. Headwrap should stay in place for 1 week. The drain will be removed the following 1-5 days in the office depending on output.
  7. May shower below the neck only. No makeup application or hair coloring until 3 weeks after surgery. Avoid direct sunlight as this will cause your scars to worsen.
  8. Rest, but walking is encouraged. No strenuous activity. No activities that raise your blood pressure. No exercising. Do not bend over for the first week.
  9. Okay to drive after 24 hours if not taking narcotics.
  10. Severe pain with excessive swelling of one side when compared with the other should be called to the attention of the doctor immediately. You will have normal swelling and bruising for several days but this will subside gradually.
  11. You must use your judgment and call the office immediately if you are concerned about a possible complication.