The biggest advantage of a thread lift is the absence of visible scars and the very short downtime from routine activities.
It is common to combine a thread lift with other non-invasive procedures such as anti-wrinkle injections, laser treatments and facial peels that help improve skin texture. Liposuction can be performed at the same time, to improve the contours of the face.
People opt to have a thread lift to reduce signs of premature ageing, especially sagging skin on the face and neck.
A thread lift requires specialist training, a thorough understanding of the muscles and tissue composition under the skin, and experience with the techniques that will deliver the best results. Select a board certified surgeon with experience and special training in thread lift techniques. Make sure you understand the credentials of a surgeon before opting for this procedure.
Some complications associated with having a thread lift include threads being visible under the skin or skin irritation from the placement of the barbs. At the risk of sounding like a broken record, it is of paramount importance that you choose an experienced surgeon to perform the procedure.
All thread lifts are performed with surgical sutures. Thread lifts were previously performed with permanent sutures. They are now mostly done with dissolvable sutures that disappear over a few months.
A thread lift is classified as a non-invasive procedure and is usually performed on an outpatient basis under local anaesthesia. Light sedation is sometimes given on request. The procedure takes around an hour to complete.
The thread lift procedure involves making small incisions in key locations, most often in the hairline, and inserting a threaded needle under the skin to anchor both ends to lift and suspend the skin. Several variations of the threading technique exist, as a preference of the surgeon or to meet specific patient needs. Once the individual situation has been assessed, generally between 2 and 20 threads will be used.
Thread lifting is a relatively new procedure. Although early thread lifts were performed using permanent threads, surgeons today use dissolvable barbed threads. The barbs are embedded in the skin to promote fibrosis, the formation of new collagen bundles. The newly formed collagen acts as a type of scaffolding to hold up the skin, making it firm in the process. Skin tends to lose firmness and elasticity and sags with age because the volume of elastin and collagen fibre in the skin diminishes over time. According to Dr. Cirro Accardo, an Italian plastic surgeon who developed the barbed dissolvable thread now marketed under the brand Promoitalia; “Cells produce hyaluronic acid in response to the fibrosis, which attracts and builds moisture in the area to make the skin firm and full. When the micro vessels in the skin become traumatised by the thread insertion, they open up, and new blood with oxygen and nutrients flow to heal them, which also results in younger looking skin.”
There will be some level of discomfort, swelling and bruising around the area after the procedure. This will gradually subside. Critics of the technique say that the effects of thread lifting are temporary because the visible enhancement immediately following the procedure is mostly due to inflammation and the resulting pooling of body fluids (edema) around the threaded area.
You can expect to go home within several hours of the procedure. You can also expect to be back to normal activities 2 to 3 days later.
You will be told not to eat or drink anything after midnight on the day of your thread lift. You may also be given an antibiotic before the procedure and asked to stop taking certain types of medications, such as aspirin, which can disrupt the healing process.
After the lift, threads take a few weeks to settle into place and integrate properly with the skin. Your surgeon will provide postoperative instructions that you must follow to the letter to reduce the risk of complications during your period of recovery.
These may include:
As with any procedure, there are risks and complications that may arise following a thread lift.
The experience and skill of your surgeon will contribute significantly to the successful outcome of your thread lift. You can avert risk significantly by selecting a surgeon who has received special training in thread lift procedures.
Treatment cost depends on a number of factors, including the extent of anticipated enhancement, the number of threads used, the surgeon’s fees and the fees of the facility.
On average expect your thread lift to cost between $4,000 (AUD) to $5,000 (AUD).
You should expect the costs to be higher if you are having combined procedures at the same time.
This information is correct as of 2017.