Otolaryngology | Facial Plastic Surgery Questions Facelift Surgery

Facial nerve damage after plastic surgery?

I'm 45 years old, and I had a face lift 4 weeks ago. Right now, my upper and lower lips are twisted. I have feeling in them, but have no control over most of my movements. What should I do?

7 Answers

Unfortunately, there are instances when there is nerve impairment. Sometimes it is temporary, on occasion it might be permanent.
You need to report this to your Surgeon who performed your surgery.
I’m so sorry you are experiencing this. I know getting a facelift is a big decision and you don’t want to have any hiccups along the way. What I would say to you about your symptoms is that generally most nerve weaknesses that occur after a facelift are temporary and full recovery is expected. Especially if you did not have a deep plane facelift. Lots of times swelling around the nerve is the cause. To that end, if your over all health permits, we can put you on steroids to decrease the swelling further. This should aid in the recovery of the nerve. I hope you recover soon and get to enjoy your facelift as you had intended to.
I am sure your plastic surgeon is following your progress. Many times the nerve will return to normal on its own. After 6 weeks or so if you are not improving then nerve studies can be done to see if the nerve was impaired by surgery. Good Luck
There are motor nerves which move the muscles of the face, separate from the sensory nerves of the skin. Depending upon the muscles and extent to which they are affected, the nerve
May heal in 6 months approximately. Progress will be seen week to week if recovering function. You should follow up frequently with your surgeon to follow and may refer you to physical therapy.
Hi there. It can be common at times as the healing process differs from person to person. I highly advise you speak with your board certified plastic surgeon about this. If you have concern still, you may seek consult from someone else but it is important your surgeon is aware. I think it’s tough to advise without photographs but I do know healing and expressions coming back to normal can be affected and fixed.
Facial asymmetry is an uncommon complication from facelift surgery, but something facial plastic surgeons are trained to anticipate. This usually occurs when the facial nerve, which innervates the muscles of the face, is damaged from stretching or swelling. Full recovery is expected in most cases, however, your surgeon should be closely monitoring you. Schedule an appointment with the surgeon who performed your procedure if you haven't already so they can perform a full assessment.

Monica Kieu, DO