The normal position of the brow is different in males and females. Nevertheless, with age and gravity the brow droops. This can result in a tired or angry appearance. Muscles on the forehead will try to compensate by pulling the brow upwards resulting in the formation of forehead wrinkles. A brow lift is a surgical operation that can help to reverse some of these changes by lifting and redraping the brow to a higher position. It can be combined with a blepharoplasty to rejuvenate the upper third of the face.
Types of brow lift
- Open/coronal browlift
This is an effective method of lifting the brow however it involves a long scar over the scalp which runs from ear to ear. The scars heal well and will not be noticeable in the long term provided there is hair coverage.
- Suture suspension browlift
This browlift technique involves incisions in the hairline followed by lifting of the brow skin and suspension at a higher point with the use of sutures.
- Endoscopic browlift
An endoscopic browlift is surgical technique that uses key hole surgery and employs the use of hand held scopes. The brow is lifted and suspended through a total of 4-5 incisions in the scalp and hairline. The lift is maintained with the use of screws and sutures.
What should I expect ?
A browlift can be done under a local or general anaesthetic and usually takes 1-2 hours depending on the technique used. You will be admitted on the day of surgery and depending on which technique is employed, you may go home the same day or stay overnight in hospital. The incisions are stitched closed and will need to be removed at 5-7 days. After your operation, you should expect some bruising and swelling which is normal. This usually takes 10-14 days to settle down. Although recovery is different in everyone, most people feel well enough to return to work after 2 weeks. You should still avoid strenuous exercises for 4-6 weeks. Immediately after your operation, the brow may seem a little high however over a period of a few weeks, this drops to the appropriate position.
What follow up will I have ?
Your wounds will be checked at 5-7 days and the sutures will be removed. Following that, you will have a further appointment at 3 months to review the outcome.
What are the risks and complications ?
A browlift is a routine operation with the vast majority of patients being happy with the results however it is important you understand the potential risks and complications that can occur
Scarring : The scars in a browlift are sited mainly within the hair or hairline so tend to be hidden. The exception is in bald men where the scars will be evident
Loss of sensation : There may be a degree of sensation loss in the scalp above the scars. This is usually temporary however they can be permanent
Wound breakdown : Wound breakdown is uncommon. If it occurs, it will require dressings to allow it to heal. It may result in a poorer quality scar if it occurs
Bleeding : Although every effort is taken to control bleeding, a blood clot may occasionally form beneath the brow. If this occurs, you will require removal of the clot in theatre
Hair loss : There may be some minor hair loss around the incision sites however it is unlikely that it will be noticeable
Asymmetry : Although the same operation is performed to both sides of the brow, there may be small differences between them
Further information can be downloaded here in this Face and Brow Lift guide