Can Facial Asymmetry Be Corrected with Face Lift Surgery?
12 March 2021 onur
The human face is always asymmetrical.
No surgical procedure can create a symmetrical face, let alone a facelift.
Facial asymmetry is often present at birth. The development of the face is asymmetrical and the aging process is also asymmetrical.
As the bone structure in the right and left halves of the face is different, the strength of the muscles and the number and frequency of the ligaments holding the soft tissue in place are also different.
For example, the lower half of the face is functionally more flexible on the side where the jawbone is longer.
The nasolabial fold will be deeper and the under-eye volume loss will be greater on the side where the mimic muscle responsible for smiling is more active.
Even the slightest axis rotation in the upper jaw and tooth alignment defects instantly change the contour of the mouth.
These factors cannot be changed in facelift.
In facelift surgery, we open the retaining ligaments of the face and mobilize the face. Then we bring it to the maximal point it can reach and fix it on the facial skeleton. Particularly in modern deep plane surgeries, no underlifting/overlifting is possible. In surgery, the right and left sides of the face are never equally mobilized, and the same amount of skin never comes out of the right and left sides.
Mapping the deep plane retaining ligaments of the face was my dissertation subject at the Cleveland Clinic in 2011. We studied dozens of cadavers from different ethnic groups. The connective tissue anatomy between the right and left facial halves was completely different in each patient. This research won the best study award in the field of aesthetic surgery at the 2012 Congress of the American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery and was published in the PRS journal the following year.
Facelift surgery cannot correct structural asymmetries, nor is it an operation that can be performed symmetrically by nature.
If your expectation is to have a symmetrical face after facelift surgery, you should know that this is not possible.
However, we can still camouflage postoperative asymmetries to some extent with fillers/tissue injections.
After facelift surgery, one side of your face will always be slightly more flexible than the other. Patients may think that the more flexible side can be lifted a little more. However, the difference in flexibility is mostly due to the functional flexibility of the face being greater on one side and not because of less tension on a specific side of the face.
In the blog, I have two more posts on functional flexibility of the face and facial asymmetry. If you are interested in facial rejuvenation surgeries, I recommend you take a look at those posts. None of the facial aesthetic surgeries is suitable for individuals with an obsession for symmetry. Before surgery, you must gain an objective point of view about what the normal level of facial asymmetry is.
This is because surgeries are not shaped or modified according to our sensitivities.
Please feel free to contact us for more detailed information on facial rejuvenation surgeries.
Take good care…
… of yourself and your beauty.