After The Procedure


After Neck Lift Surgery

 The procedure itself will take about 2.5 hours but may take longer if other procedures are also being done at the same time.
 

AFTER SURGERY

  • It is very important not to become nauseated after surgery and / or vomit. To prevent this take Zofran as directed.
  • Listen to your body. If you are tired, rest. Discomfort during recovery is often a sign of overexertion.
  • Rest and sleep in a reclined position at approximately 45 degrees. Use ice packs, frozen finely broken up peas or corn constantly for at least the first 3 days, 15 minutes on 15 minutes off. Do not put ice directly onto skin because you will have decreased sensitivity.
  • Joseph T Cruise, MD will remove all dressings within two days of surgery. Afterward you may shower with cool water, gently wash your hair, apply generous amounts of both shampoo and conditioner. Gently wash the entire face with soap and water. Do not try to remove all blood with the first washing. Reapply garment after shower.
  • You must wait one month before coloring or perming your hair.
  • Avoid exposing the incision to direct sunlight for at least 6 weeks, apply sunscreen (at least SPF 15) to the area of the incision if you will be in the sun for extended periods of time.
  • Do not smoke for at least 2 weeks after surgery.
  • Do not use aspirin-containing products for at least 1 week. You may take Tylenol or pain medication as prescribed.
  • Do not apply any cosmetics for the first 5 days. The day after surgery start applying hydrocortisone 1% to face for 1 week twice a day.
  • Do not put any ointments or creams on incision lines unless instructed by Joseph T Cruise, MD. You should start applying ScarLess® on your incisions seven days after surgery. ScarLess® is a prescription strength cream with vitamin E, silicone and Hydrocortisone to help minimize redness and elevation of the scars. You can purchase ScarLess® at our office.
  • Do not do any strenuous aerobic activity for 6 weeks after surgery.

WHAT TO EXPECT AS YOU RECOVER

  • Immediately after neck lift surgery, some patients feel groggy or nauseous. These feelings normally subside by the next day.
  • Post surgical swelling may temporarily cause the look of unevenness, skin changes, hard spots, and ridges.
  • Most bruising will fade after the second week. After the first week much of the remaining discoloration can be concealed with a cream-based cosmetic.
  • Most stitches will dissolve within 7 days; some might need to be removed at 2-3 weeks.
  • Pink scars will eventually fade to an unnoticeable color.
  • Your healing incision lines may itch a little. Avoid scratching them. Apply hydrocortisone cream.
  • You may experience some numbness for up to one year. Remember not to put ice or anything hot directly onto skin because you may have decreased awareness of temperature damage.

WHEN TO CALL US

Post surgical complications are rare and are often easily solved by the doctor if you notify us. Call us if you experience any of the following: a temperature of 101 or higher, increased local redness or warmth, chest pain, shortness of breath, legs swelling, calf pain or if you feel that anything might be wrong. Please call the office@ 949-644-4808 within regular business hours, or page Joseph T Cruise, MD after business hours @

POST-OP VISITS AND CARE SUMMARY

Concern Instructions

Blood Clot
  • It is important to walk at least every 2 hours while you're awake to prevent blood clotting - do not over do it. Right after surgery you will be instructed to walk around every 1 hour. Avoid stairs.
  • Pay specific attention to leg swelling. If you notice swelling on only one leg or calf pain contact the office.
Fluid Collection
  • The evening after surgery it is important to look if one side of the face is more firm and swollen than the other. this might represent a blood collection.
Drain Function
  • Empty drain every 8 hours or when it becomes more than half full and write down amount of drainage..
  • Drains come out at about 2-3 days, depending of amount of drainage.
Constipation
  • If you are constipated at day 2 stop taking Vicodin or Darvocet.
  • Encourage walking, drink a lot of fluids, consider laxative (Ex-lax or Correctol).
Fever
  • Make sure to cough and deep breaths as fever is usually in lungs for the first 3 days after surgery.
Garment Placement
  • You will have a big bulky dressing for the first day. You will receive garment at your first postoperative visit. It should be worn for 10 days 24/7 and then at night for one month. Make sure that the garment doesn't irritate your skin and is not too tight on the ears.
Wound Care
  • If you are constipated at day 2 stop taking Vicodin or Darvocet.
  • Encourage walking, drink a lot of fluids, consider laxative (Ex-lax or Correctol).
Activity
  • You can take a cool shower the day after. Hold drain in shower and allow clean water to run over drain entrance into the body. Make sure you have someone helping you. Apply generous amounts of both shampoo and conditioner. Gently wash the entire face with soap and water. Do not try to remove all blood with the first washing. Reapply garment after shower.
  • Walk every hour while awake for the first day and then every 2 hours.
  • Sleep at 45 degree angle for the first 5 nights.
  • Regarding exercise: If it hurts don't do it. Wait for your body to tell you what you can do.
  • You can start exercising at about 6 weeks.
  • Encourage walking, drink a lot of fluids, consider laxative (Ex-lax or Correctol).
Wound Car
  • Your gauze will be changed at your follow up visit.
  • Make sure your garment is placed correctly.
  • Keep surgical area clean and dry at all times.
  • Start applying ScarLess® at one week

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