The Neck’s Big Thing – Making A Better Neckline

The shape and profile of the neck, even though it is not on the face per se, imparts an impression as to one’s appearance. Whether one is young with a fat neck or older with loose skin or a turkeyneck, a poorly defined neck angle results. While liposuction can remove fat and a necklift can tighten skin, an ideal neck angle is not always achieved.

What is missing from any cosmetic neck operation is a method to tighten the underlying muscles and tissues. By making a more firm ‘hammock’ that extends from ear to ear, the neck angle can be changed significantly.  A new device, called the iGuide, has now become available to help create a firmer and more youthful neckline.

The iGuide is an FDA-approved device that is for tightening and lifting of neck tissues. It provides a less invasive technique to improve the neck and jawline with minimal incisions (unlike a traditional facelift) while at the same time shortening recovery time. By not doing wide undermining and elevation of neck skin, the swelling and bruising is much less and one’s recovery is quicker.

The iGuide allows the deeper tissue in the neck to be tightened by essentially creating a ‘neck hammock’ using a permanent suture. Through a series of needle punctures placed along the jawline, a suture is weaved back and forth from side to side to create a trampoline-like structure. This suture weave creates a low-tension support which elevates the tissues below the neck skin, a missing element from current necklifting procedures. This type of suture is not to be confused with the infamous barbed sutures (Threadlift operation) of the past.

From a neck recontouring standpoint, the iGuide has multiple potential uses. For the younger patient with a fuller neck where liposuction alone is not completely satisfactory, a suture weave can provide additional neck angle improvement. For the early signs of neck and jowl aging, a short scar facelift is great for the jowl area but may not always optimally treat the neck angle. The trampoline effect of the suture weave makes for a better neck angle result. Older patients with a turkeyneck may still require a more traditional necklift however.

The iGuide neck contouring system, in some cases, may be able to be done under local anesthesia without going to sleep.  If all one’s neck needs is some liposuction and a suture weave, this would certainly be possible. Neither the tiny incisions nor the weaving of the suture requires the use of any sharp needles. But when other facial procedures are being done with it, then more than local anesthesia would be needed.

The iGuide provides a clever minimally invasive approach to redefining one’s neckline and is a great adjunct to liposuction and any form of a necklift.  As its tagline states, it is ‘The Neck’s Big Thing‘.

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis, Indiana