Rhytidectomy, Rhytidoplasty or Facelift Plastic Surgery in Costa Rica

What is Rhytidectomy, Rhytidoplasty or Facelift?

From the Greek word “rythid” means wrinkle the skin, the suffix “ectomy” is removed, so the word Rhytidectomy is the medical term used for the operation that removes wrinkles or stretched and flabby tissues in the face and neck.

This operation reduces sagging and a wrinkle caused by stretched skin, and lifts and repositions the fatty tissues of the face and neck that tend to sag with aging. The operation is indicated by any of the following two reasons: to help prevent the progression of aging in young (under 40 years) and have them remain with a youthful appearance, or to assist a person that is wrinkled, with sagging skin look younger and fresh.

How long is the result of the operation?

Perhaps this is the most frequently asked question by the individual seeking a facelift. The duration of improvement depends on many factors such as type of skin care that is given to it, sun exposure, diet, etc… In an obese person, the duration of improvement of a facelift is very short. In people of normal structure can be said that the duration ranges from 5 to 10 years depending on the factors mentioned. There is no operation on an ongoing basis to prevent aging, but the operated individual will ever be seen as old as it would if he had not had surgery.

Rhytidectomy or facelift has become one of the most popular operations in plastic surgery because the medical and technological advances have increased considerably in life expectancy and so many women and men find that they look older than how they feel physically and mentally.


It is normal after the operation to present some swelling and bruising. The swelling gradually disappears after the first day. The “bruise” may last a little longer, but they blend easily with makeup that can be started using a week of operation. To help minimize the inflammation process is recommended the patient to avoid the sun, alcohol and snuff during the first weeks, and also, it is recommended to rest, avoid talking much and laugh the first few days.

They are left with a bandage to decrease seroma or hematoma formation, for at least 2 weeks.

They may experience mild discomfort after surgery, but this is easily controlled with medication. The severe pain is rare. Sutures are removed during the first week.

A facelift or rhytidectomy is a procedure that can help improve your appearance and look younger. This will definitely help you feel better and more encouragement for their daily activities. The risks involved are minimal. However, there certainly are inherent in any surgical procedure you undergo.


Every surgical procedure involves a certain amount of risk, although most of patients do not experience these complications.

  • Bleeding or Bruising: It is possible, though unusual (less than 2%) experienced a bleeding episode during or after surgery. In that case, it may require emergency treatment to drain accumulated blood. Hypertension (high blood pressure) that is not well controlled can cause bleeding during or after surgery.
  • Infection: Infection is unusual after surgery. If infection occurs, it will require additional treatments with antibiotics or surgery.
  • Healing: although it is expected good healing after surgery, abnormal scars may be given, they occur due to genetic predisposition or other causes peculiar to the wound. Scars may be unattractive and of different color than surrounding skin. You may remain visible marks from sutures. Additional treatments may be needed to treat scarring.
  • Nerve injury: although it is very unlikely to happen, they can injure nerves during surgery of this type. Nerve damage can cause temporary or permanent loss of movement and sensation in the face. Such injuries usually improve over time.
  • Asymmetry: the human face is normally asymmetrical. It can vary from one side to another in the results obtained from a facelift procedure.
  • Unsatisfactory: you may be disappointed with the results of surgery. Although this is rare, you may need additional surgery to improve your results.
  • Hair loss: Hair loss can occur in areas of the face where the skin is elevated during surgery. The appearance of this is not predictable.
  • Slow recovery: it is likely that certain areas of the face may not heal normally or take a long time to recover. There are areas of skin that may be lost or necrotic. This happens primarily in smokers or people with poor circulation. In this case, frequent changes may be required to cure or further surgery to remove tissue that has not been recovered. Smokers have an increased risk of skin loss and complications in wound healing. It is my policy not to operate absolute smokers, to ensure patient safety and prevent complications. Patients who smoke are strongly encouraged to stop smoking for at least one month before and one month after surgery.

Long-term results facelift does not stop the aging process or produce permanent tightening of the face and neck. Weight loss or increased sun exposure, or other circumstances may influence the results of this surgery. Surgery or other treatments may be necessary to maintain the results of cosmetic surgery.