Frequently Asked Questions about Facial Plastic Surgery

At UPMC Facial Plastic Surgery, we want to help you know all you can about the facial plastic surgery process and what to expect.

If you're still unsure if facial plastic surgery is right for you, Dr. Gillman offers free consults. Just call 412-697-FACE (3223) to schedule your free consult.

What is facial plastic surgery?

Facial plastic surgery procedures, or cosmetic facial plastic surgery, change the shape and appearance of the:

  • Nose
  • Jaw
  • Neckline
  • Ears
  • Cheeks
  • Eyes
  • Forehead

It can also reduce the signs of aging.

Reconstructive facial plastic surgery rebuilds or fixes defects of the face due to:

  • Trauma
  • Prior surgeries
  • Diseases
  • Congenital conditions

When is it best to start facial plastic surgery?

The best time to begin the plastic surgery process depends on you.

It's important for you to:

  • Be fully ready to make the physical changes.
  • Understand the treatment process and the effects they can have on your life.
  • Trust and feel comfortable with your facial plastic surgeon.

Will I be awake during surgery?

No. You will be asleep during your facial plastic surgery procedure.

We will give you either intravenous sedation or general anesthesia to help you sleep and feel comfortable. You will need to bring someone with you to drive you home after surgery.

Is facial plastic surgery painful?

For most facial plastic surgery procedures, you will be under general anesthesia so you won't feel any pain during surgery.

After any surgical procedure, you can expect some discomfort.

Generally, the postoperative pain is mild and we can easily control it with pain medication. Many people need nothing more than extra strength acetaminophen, such as Tylenol, for two or three days after surgery.

Are there risks to facial plastic surgery?

At UPMC Facial Plastic Surgery, we fully inform you about all potential risks prior to surgery.

We also give you in-depth instructions on pre- and postoperative care to ensure you have a speedy and successful recovery.

How long will the procedures take?

It depends on how much work you're having done.

At UPMC Facial Plastic Surgery, we will discuss specific timeframes during your consult.

Can I go home right after surgery?

This varies depending on:

  • The type of and length of your facial cosmetic surgery.
  • The time of day you're having surgery.
  • Your wishes. We can arrange an overnight stay if you prefer.

At UPMC Facial Plastic Surgery, we perform most surgical procedures on a same day basis.

Several procedures allow patients to go back to work and resume their daily routine right away. Others require a longer recovery time.

How long will bruising and swelling last?

Nonsurgical or office-based cosmetic procedures often involve little or no bruising.

Postoperative bruising and swelling from surgical facial cosmetic procedures varies from person to person but usually begins to resolve by the end of the first week. It may take one to three weeks for bruising and swelling to fully go away.

You can easily cover up bruises with makeup, such as a concealer stick.

When can I work out?

Any activity that might increase blood pressure may increase the amount of time it takes for postoperative swelling to resolve.

Depending on the facial plastic surgery procedure, you should avoid aerobic activities for at least two to three weeks following surgery. You will need to avoid all contact sports for six weeks following rhinoplasty (nasal surgery).

How long will the results of the procedure last?

You will have permanent results from surgical facial cosmetic procedures that reshape the:

  • Nose
  • Eyes
  • Chin
  • Ears
  • Jaw
  • Cheeks

Of course, surgery does not stop the natural aging process.

Nonsurgical procedures, such as Botox® or wrinkle fillers, may need some follow-up procedures months to years later.

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