Q: Dr. Eppley, I am interested in knee lifts. I am 50 years old and am very active but my knees look like an 80 year old women. I need a knee lift to regain my KNEE self-esteem. I am in disbelief as active as I am that my knees have aged so horribly. I have an adverse reaction to most anesthetics so hopefully this is a procedure which could be done under a local anesthetic.
A: The knees, like any other structure on the body, are not immune to the aging process. the constant motion across the knee joint requires moveable flexible skin. But for some people (usually thinner and very active ones) that constant motion results in the development of loose skin. This loose skin appears as folds above the knees, often having two or three small skin folds that have ‘piled up’ above the knee cap.
The procedure of a knee lift can remove these skin folds by excising a crescent of skin above the patella. It must be marked and removed carefully so that enough skin is left for the knee to bend 90 degrees of greater without undue pulling on the wound closure/scar. It is a fairly simple outpatient procedure that for the very motivated could be done under local anesthesia. It does result in a fine line scar above the knee and this must be considered carefully as a worthwhile aesthetic trade-off for the removal of the suprapatellar skin folds.
Dr. Barry Eppley