Is Muscle Trimmed During A Facelift?

Q: Dr. Eppley, Is only skin trimmed during a standard facelift or both skin and muscle? If so, what do you do if you have excess muscle? Thank you!

A: It is common that patients confuse what occurs under the skin in a facelift. Muscles are manipulated in a facelift but only in the central neck through the submental incision. The platysma muscle may be tightened and is some cases even resected (trimmed) and released out laterally. But on the side of the face no muscle exists that can be manipulated. They deeper masster muscle is what occupies the side of the face and can never moved or manipulated as has no role in facial aging. Rather it is the tissue layer above the muscle, the SMAS layer, is what is lifted and repositioned that along with skin removal creates the rejuvenated lower facial appearance.

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis, Indiana