Dr. med. Christian Köhler

Practising Doctor, MBA, Diploma in Health Economics, Certified Consultant and Managing Director

Years of experience in cosmetic surgery

In-depth consultation and precise planning of the surgery

Constant further education and training

Facts on Facelift

Medical termRhytidectomy
Whomen and women
Durationseveral hours
Down time2 weeks
Head bandage for 24h-3 days
No exercise for 4 weeks
Pricefrom CHF 12'000: Facelift

As part of the normal aging process our skin, and especially the skin on our face, loses its elasticity, and the musculature in the subcutaneous fatty tissue becomes increasingly saggy. Small wrinkles gradually develop and increase in depth, particularly around the eyes, lips, cheeks and neck. Our lifestyle also has an influence on the signs of aging, as do environmental factors such as stress, poor nutrition, intensive exposure to sunlight and nicotine.

A skin lift can bring about a clear improvement, particularly in the case of drooping jowls or sagging skin, creating a natural result that makes you look a few years younger.

An S-Lift can visibly tighten facial features and rejuvenate the appearance without leaving major visible scars behind the ears and on the temples. In the process, excess skin is removed and subcutaneous fatty tissue is removed by suction if required. The musculature and connective tissue (SMAS) are tightened. An S-Lift focuses mainly on the mouth, chin and neck area. The patient does not need to cut or shave their head hair. Unlike a major lift, this procedure does not cause hair loss. Ugly scarring behind the ears is also reduced. Complications resulting from an S-Lift are very rare, and the chances of the procedure being a success are much greater. Clients can return to work and resume their social life much more quickly.

As a rule, we prefer a face lift that also includes a neck lift in order to achieve an anatomical result. The incision is made in front of the ear, but is usually almost invisible after a few weeks. With men, it depends on the individual situation, a scar might be visible for longer. Ultimately, the result with the face-neck lift is significantly more beneficial.

How many years younger will I look after the face and neck lift?

Depending on the preliminary clinical findings and the operating technique, a tightening can rejuvenate the face by approximately 8-10 years.

How long does a face and necklift last?

The effects can last for 10-15 years, depending on the patient's skin, connective tissue and age.

When can a face and neck lift be repeated?

After approximately 10 years, or earlier depending on the technique (S-Lift).

  • A thinker´s brow
  • Laughter lines
  • Cheek lines and nasolabial wrinkles
  • Lip wrinkles
  • Frown lines
  • Drooping cheeks
  • Neckline wrinkles
  • Neck muscle cords

Unfortunately not all wrinkles can be smoothed out, as this would leave you with a mask-like appearance. Eyelids, foreheads and lip wrinkles cannot be smoothed out. To do so would require additional procedures carried out either simultaneously or subsequently.

You cannot have this operation if you...

  • suffer from a metabolic disorder (e.g. diabetes) or a disorder of the major organs (e.g. heart, circulation, nervous system, liver, kidneys, thyroid, lungs)
  • have an acute or chronic infectious disease (e.g. hepatitis, HIV/AIDS)
  • suffer from allergies or hypersensitivity reactions
  • have a blood disorder or an increased tendency to bleed.
  • are prone to developing blood clots (thrombosis, embolism), abscesses, fistulas, heavy scarring (keloid), ulceration and prolonged healing

You must be physically and mentally prepared for this operation, as it is an irreversible event. This means that the procedure cannot be undone. You must be fasting and not wearing any makeup for the procedure. For safety reasons, an overnight stay at the clinic may sometimes be required. A sedation is required, depending on the extent of the treatment. A local anaesthetic will also be applied to the face. As you are in a twilight sleep for the procedure, you should not feel any pain.

Antibiotic coverage is simply a precautionary measure as infections rarely occur with an S-Lift. The patient is connected to an electronic measuring device that constantly monitors heart activity (ECG), pulse, blood pressure and oxygen saturation in the blood.

An anaesthetist is present to monitor your cardiovascular system (as a standby measure). An S-shaped section of skin measuring 2-4 cm in width and 10 cm in length is excised from the area in front of the ear. Blood vessels and nerves are left intact. If required, fatty tissue can be sucked out from a double chin or from the jowls. The muscle and tendon layer is then tightened and secured. The skin is sewn up using a very fine suture or joined with staples.

Duration and anaesthetic

The facelift operation generally lasts several hours. It requires close monitoring of the patient's circulation and oxygen supply. It can be performed under sedation or local anaesthetic.

You will wear a head bandage for 24 hours to 3 days after the procedure. Afterwards, we recommend wearing a head cuff, especially at night. The wound pain is mild. We will give you pain pills. The pain subsides after 1-2 days. If the pain worsens, you must inform us. Significant swelling and bruising in the area of ​​the face must be reported also. The mobility of the mouth is somewhat limited in the first few days due to pain, so we recommend liquid or soft food that should not be too hot. The threads do not need to be removed. The hair can be washed after 3 days. You can shower from day one with the exclusion of the head area. Gymnastics or exercises, sauna and sunbathing must be postponed for 4 weeks. Starting work and other social obligations are possible after two weeks.

Excessive scarring (keloid) is rare, but cannot be excluded. This complication may occasionally occur and can be treated with ointments and injections. In 15% of cases a scar correction operation may be necessary (free of charge). Wound healing disorders and wound infections may occasionally occur (e.g. in smokers and patients with diabetes). Infections have become very rare in recent years. However, we provide antibiotic cover as a preventative measure. Haematoma can occur on rare occasions. If required, this can be surgically drained. Damage to nerves or blood vessels is quite rare. Paresthesia in the cheeks is rare, but it may occur. If it occurs at all, this condition only lasts a few months. In rare cases, touch-ups may be required (small scar corrections and liposuction). There is no extra charge for these touch-ups.

  • Internal bleeding in the skin, musculature and fatty tissue - this does not usually require treatment.
  • Temporary irritation of the skin caused by disinfectant, dryness or touch. This usually subsides of its own accord.
  • Swelling of the connective tissue or fatty tissue. This usually subsides if general anti-swelling measures are taken. A supplementary course of medication may be required.
  • Swelling and discolouration from haematoma. This usually subsides of its own accord. Keeping the area raised and cool can assist with this. Swelling may also cause temporary damage to facial nerves. This can increase or reduce sensitivity for several months. In very rare cases a loss of muscle function may occur, along with signs of paralysis. This requires a corrective operation.
  • Secondary bleeding and haematoma may occur, even several days after the operation. For the most part, this requires no further treatment. An operation to stop the bleeding is only required in extreme cases.
  • The edges of the wound may split under mechanical stress, e.g. when brushing hair. This can have an undesirable effect on scar formation and in very rare cases can even require a scar correction procedure. Minor bleeding can cause necrosis (tissue death), which may require longer wound treatment or a follow-up operation.
  • In very rare cases, local anaesthetic or the additional injection of haemostatic medication during anaesthesia can cause undesirable side effects such as allergic reactions, or reactions to the anaesthetic (swelling, itching, severe circulatory reactions and shock), additional side effects in the central nervous system (restlessness, cramp, respiratory disorders), raised or lowered blood pressure, cardiac arrhythmia and slowing of heartbeat.
  • Rare inflammatory reaction of the wounds, especially with embedded sutures. This can extend treatment duration.
  • Scars: the operation cannot be performed without leaving scars. However, they are positioned in skin folds to ensure that they are as inconspicuous as possible and can be easily concealed. The natural redness of fresh sutures disappears after 2-3 weeks, but in rare cases it can last for several months. Small skin cysts may form in the scar area, but these can be treated quickly and easily.
  • Disruptions to scar formation: depending on the constitution of the patient, bulging, painful scars that itch may occur (excess scarring, keloid scarring). Keloid scarring usually subsides through conservative treatment without the need for further operations.
  • Excessive scarring of the skin and musculature really only occurs after years of nicotine misuse, or if there is severe internal bleeding with no inflammation. Scarring of the lower eyelid after this kind of complication must often be improved by means of a further surgical procedure.
  • Overcorrection: excessive skin removal or scar tension after inflammations can be problematic. In the first weeks after the operation, skin tension will improve on its own. An operation will be required to correct any continuing disorders.
  • In some cases the cosmetic result may be unsatisfactory. This can be corrected with a further operation if necessary.
  • Haematoma - drainage tubes are sometimes left in place on the chin for the first few days after the procedure. Facial tension. This can cause short-term hair loss in the suture area (e.g. after distinct haematoma). Normally there is no tension in the skin.
  • Wound healing may be impaired if smokers do not stop or significantly restrict their nicotine intake.
  • Infection in the hair area. Badly healed wounds can leave a broad scar. Damage to the muscle nerve. Regeneration usually occurs within 3-6 months.


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