What you need to know about:

Facelift Surgery (Rhytidectomy)

Fast Fact

Worth It Rating
Average Cost:
Recovery Period:
2 to 3 weeks
7 to 10 years
Time it takes:
2 to 5 hours
Hospitals & Clinics
General anesthesia

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Overview of

Facelift Surgery (Rhytidectomy)

in Thailand

A facelift surgery or a rhytidectomy, is a cosmetic procedure that improves your facial aesthetics by restoring your youthful appearance. This procedure helps in reducing the various signs of aging. It tightens the skin in the region of the face and neck. The effect of this treatment lasts for around 5 to 10 years.

Facial appearance may vary with age due to changes in the facial balance, whereas facial proportion remains unchanged.

A juvenile face has good muscle and ligament tonicity with tight skin overlying it. Fat under the skin is well distributed and deposited in the region of the contours. With age, multiple changes are observed in the skin at the microscopic level producing effects clinically.

To compensate for the age-related changes in the facial region, a surgical procedure commonly known as facelift surgery is performed. The medical term for this procedure is rhytidectomy and it is performed to rejuvenate the face by lightening the effects of aging. Not only does it diminish the wrinkles and fine lines, but it also improves the quality of the skin by restoring its youthful glow and tone.

Signs of aging

  • prominent tear troughs (shrunken appearance of the lower eyelid)
  • sunken mid-cheek grove (sunken cheeks)
  • deepening of skin fold between the upper lip and side of the nose.
  • loss of muscle tonicity leading to sagging of the face.
  • bulging and herniation of fatty tissue at different sites of the face.
  • horizontal lines on the forehead.
  • drooping of eyebrows.

Goals of

Facelift Surgery (Rhytidectomy)

Facelift surgery is performed to achieve a youthful appearance. In this surgical procedure, excess fat is removed, underlined muscles and ligaments are stretched and tightened to counter the age-related sagging, especially in the region of the neck and the chin. Overlined skin is tightened and excess skin is removed to accommodate the underlined tissue.

Price of

Facelift Surgery (Rhytidectomy)

in Thailand

Average Cost


Price Range

$1,900 to $5,300

Pros and cons of

Facelift Surgery (Rhytidectomy)


  • results of this procedure can be observed immediately after the healing. The major areas like the chin, neck, and cheeks where sagging is observed commonly due to their muscular structure tend to show dramatic improvements after this surgery. The results are immediate and long-lasting.
  • there is no requirement for repetitive appointments, unlike botox.
  • the procedure is painless and generally done under general anesthesia, so the patient is not conscious during the procedure.
  • patient recovers faster post-operatively due to good blood supply in the facial region.
  • it is an affordable procedure with effects that can last for up to 10 years.


  • facelift surgery makes you appear younger, it only reduces the effect of aging, but it cannot stop aging. So, age changes will occur with time as it is a natural phenomenon of the body.
  • it doesn’t change your boney contours unless facelift surgery is done with other bone augmentation procedures such as adjuvants.
  • your natural features can be restored with this surgery, but your look will not change to that of a different person.
  • there is a limit to the change that can be produced and it varies with every individual.
  • if your surgeon suggests that you are not fit for the surgery, then you can choose a non-invasive surgical cosmetic procedure like botox.

How it works:

Facelift Surgery (Rhytidectomy)

The facelift procedure usually occurs as follows:

  • The incision, which is the first cut on your skin, is given within or along the hairline in the temple region of the head. This is done to mask the scar in the hair.
  • The incision then extends downwards and turns backward in front of the ear lobe towards the lower scalp.
  • After releasing the skin from underlined tissue, a fatty layer is exposed which is further separated from the muscle lying below it.
  • Excessive fat is removed from the area where it is not required, for example, the chin area.
  • Muscles and ligaments that have lost their elasticity with age are tightened by removing some of their parts and pulled in specific directions.
  • Excess skin is removed, and the rest is tightened by pulling and suturing.
  • Absorbable stitches are used to close the inner layers whereas fine absorbable or non-absorbable stitches are used to close the skin. Sometimes surgical staples are used to close the scalp.
  • A small drain is placed and stabilized, this drains the post-operative oozing or bleeding from the surgical site to reduce swelling and internal collection of blood.
  • Duration of the surgery varies from 1 to 3 hours depending upon the area to be operated on. The procedure is performed under general anesthesia.
  • You can observe the dramatic changes after the swelling subsides. Not only will you feel younger but also add confidence to your life.

Preparation before

Facelift Surgery (Rhytidectomy)

Pre - treatment

Your surgeon will answer all your queries regarding the facelift surgery. All possible complications and outcomes will be discussed with you. Our anesthetist will discuss the type of anesthesia that will be given to you. You should decide on surgery only if you feel that you are completely informed. You are always free to ask questions that may come to you regarding surgery.

‍Be prepared to discuss:

  • The need for surgery, results of the surgery, and your expectations.
  • Your detailed medical history including drug history, allergies, etc.
  • Habits like smoking, chewing tobacco, alcohol, and drugs, or supplements you take like vitamins and minerals.
  • History of previous surgeries and blood transfusions.
  • The areas of surgery that you are most concerned about.‍
  • Your surgeon will ask you about any pre-existing medical conditions like hypertension, diabetes, thyroid-related disorders, liver disease, neurological disorder, etc.
  • To ensure that you are fit for surgery, some scans, blood tests, and urine tests will be done.

Examination of your face will be done before the surgery to plan and select the technique of operation that is suitable for you.

Measurements and photographs will be taken from different angulations for medical records and treatment plans.

Your surgeon will discuss your expectations and possible results after the examination. The course of treatment and associated complications will also be discussed.

Preparing for a facelift

A set of instructions will be given to you by the hospital which are to be followed before the surgery. This will include medications to be taken before surgery. Certain habits like tobacco chewing, smoking, alcohol, etc. will need to be discontinued for some duration before and after the surgery.

These instructions should be followed carefully to ensure better treatment, minimal risk, and fast recovery without complications.

Instructions to be followed strictly before the surgery are as follows:

  • Smoking is prohibited for two weeks before the surgery and two weeks after the surgery.
  • Cigarettes, cigars, and other forms of smoking tobacco contain high amounts of chemicals like nicotine, hydrogen cyanide, and carbon monoxide, which tend to interfere with the healing process by decreasing the supply of blood and oxygen at the site of surgery. This will increase the duration of the healing and may lead to scar formation.
  • Alcohol is associated with post-operative morbidity, so it should be avoided at least 7 days before the surgery.
  • NPO (nil per oral) is advised, which means that you are not supposed to eat or drink anything (including water) at least six hours before the surgery.
  • Medications like aspirin, ecosprin, other pain killers, and anti-inflammatory drugs should not be taken before the surgery. These may increase bleeding during surgery.
  • You will be given dietary instructions by the specialist; your food should be rich in vitamins and minerals for a speedy recovery. Medications should be followed as per prescription.
  • Your family member or a good friend should accompany you for assistance during and after the surgery.
  • It is natural to feel some anxiety or stress before surgery. You can always consult your surgeon if something bothers you before the surgery.

Recovery after

Facelift Surgery (Rhytidectomy)

Post - treatment

After completing the procedure, a dressing will be placed at the site of sutures and around the face to avoid any kind of contamination from the surroundings, and to reduce inflammation and bruising at the site of stitches. 

A small drain may be placed and stabilized, which sucks out the excess fluid or blood from the inside to reduce the hematoma (collection or pooling of blood). That will be removed after one or two days of surgery after monitoring the output.

You may feel the tightness around your face as the skin has been stretched to tighten it.

Post-op instructions will be given to you regarding:

  • Wound care (surgical site), which includes application of ointments, dressing, etc.
  • Post-op medications route (oral or injectable), frequency, and dose.
  • Prevention of surgical site infections and the possible sources of infection.
  • Regular follow-up with your surgeon.
  • Advisory for post-op activities:
  • Cold packing should be done for two days after the surgery to reduce the swelling.
  • The head should be elevated at a 45-degree angle from the ground.
  • It is advised to keep your neck stable, if you need to turn then turn with your shoulders.
  • Adequate rest is advised for the first two days, but you can mobilize yourself to avoid pooling of blood in your feet.
  • Hair can be washed with a mild shampoo after 3 days of the surgery.
  • For suture removal, visit your surgeon after seven to ten days of surgery.
  • You can resume your routine life within two to three weeks but avoid crowded places, contact sports, weightlifting, or any other exerting exercises for at least four to five weeks.
  • Postpone your hair coloring for at least six weeks post-operatively.
  • If you feel any numbness in the scalp after the surgery, do not panic, it will subside in a few months.
  • Avoid smoking and alcohol for four weeks after the surgery.
  • Avoid direct exposure to the sun for almost a year.

You can generally resume work within 14 days.

Before and after photos of

Facelift Surgery (Rhytidectomy)

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Patient reviews of

Facelift Surgery (Rhytidectomy)

We understand you may want to change your plans due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) and its health implications.

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BANGKOK-THAILAND - Verified Patients - 9 June 2021

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BANGKOK-THAILAND - Verified Patients - 9 June 2021

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BANGKOK-THAILAND - Verified Patients - 9 June 2021

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Risks & side effects

Thailand is a good option for this procedure because skilled and efficient surgeons with good helping staff is available to support and guide you. It is your personal choice on where do you want to get your surgery done. 

However, there are always some associated complications with any minor or major surgical procedure and the surgeon will discuss them with you in detail. You will be required to sign an informed consent before the surgery.

Complications and risks associated with facelift surgery:

  • Hematoma (internal bleeding): This can be either major or minor and can be associated with hypertension, anticoagulant therapy, vomiting, and pain.
  • Skin necrosis (tissue death): This is associated with diabetes and smoking.
  • Nerve injury: Facial region is rich in nerve and blood supply, so there are chances that any major or minor nerves may get injured during surgery and you may feel numbness in the area for a few months.
  • Surgical site infection: Fortunately, this is rare in the facial region due to good blood supply, but the chances of infection increase in patients with diabetes and smoking habits.
  • Scaring and irregularities: This can be avoided if the placement of skin edges during closure is proper. Chances of scaring increase with exposure to sunlight.
  • Hair loss at the site of incision: There are chances of hair loss at the site where the incision is given. This can be reversible and correctable with other invasive or non-invasive treatment modalities.
  • Salivary gland injury: The parotid gland may get injured during an operation due to which you may feel some pain while eating especially during your initial few bites. This can be treated with some injections of botox, or it may subside in a few months.
  • Risks associated with anesthesia: Your anesthetist will discuss this in detail with you. Risk may be associated with the drugs they give to anesthetize you.
  • Unsatisfactory results: It might be possible that due to a lack of symmetry, the outcomes of surgery might not be as per your expectations.

You should go read your informed consent form before signing it and are advised to discuss your expectations with your surgeon.


Facelift Surgery (Rhytidectomy)

Who are the best candidates for facelift surgery?

Men and women with good bone support but overlying loose and sagged soft tissue are ideal candidates for facelift surgery.


How do I know if I'm eligible for a facelift?

If your age is above 45 years, you are physically fit and you want to rejuvenate your look, then you are eligible for facelift surgery. Please consult a doctor for further advice.


Will I be asleep during the facelift surgery?

You will not be aware of the surroundings as you will be anesthetized. You will be unconscious during the procedure.


How long will I be in the operating room during the facelift surgery?

The duration of surgery varies from one to three hours.


Will the scars be visible after the facelift surgery?

Scars are usually hidden in the hair as the incision is made beyond the hairline. Also, fine sutures are used to stitch your skin to minimize the scar.


What activities should I avoid after the facelift surgery?

Avoid contact sports, crowded places, exerting exercises, and weight training, for at least 2 to 3 weeks. Avoid smoking and alcohol for four weeks and direct exposure to the sun for one year.


What could go wrong during and after the facelift surgery?

During surgery, there are chances of excess bleeding, rare chances of cardiovascular arrest, nerve injury, and injury to the major salivary gland. Postoperatively there are chances of hematoma, numbness, first bite pain, scar, and hair loss.


How do I prepare for facelift surgery?

Avoid smoking and alcohol at least two weeks before the surgery. Your skin should not have any acne that can be a source of infection. Get your sugar level and blood pressure within normal limits. Avoid taking any supplements and drugs before discussing them with your physician.

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