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Browlift Questions

If you have further questions about brow lifts, check the list below to find answers. While some information presented here is also contained in the above text, these short responses should complete your introduction to brow lifts. We also encourage you to consult with Dr. Kabaker individualized answers to all of your questions.

Am I a good candidate for a brow lift?
The best brow lift patient is in good health, a non-smoker, and is able to avoid blood thinning medications for two weeks before surgery. He or she has low and heavy eyebrows, and may be aware of looking tired, angry, or worried much of the time.

Can I have other procedures done at the same time as a brow lift?
You can, and often patients decide to have a blepharoplasty at the same time if they have excess upper eyelid skin as well. Doing multiple procedures on the same day does not lengthen the recovery time, and will allow the patient to accomplish many goals with one surgery.

Am I too young for a brow lift?
There is no lower age limit. Some patients have low brows at an early age which is often hereditary.

Can a brow lift improve my vision?
Some patients with low brows and excess eyelid skin can have trouble seeing to the sides because their vision is blocked by sagging skin. In these cases, elevating the brows (along with a blepharoplasty) will improve vision by relieving this obstruction.

Can a brow lift be covered by insurance?
Possibly. To be reimbursed by your insurance company, you would need to see an ophthalmologist first, to prove that your vision is actually affected by excess skin.

Will a brow lift give me a surprised look?
When done correctly, elevating the brows does not generate a surprised look. You will just look more refreshed and relaxed.

Can I achieve the effects of a brow lift by using Botox?
Botox can be used to paralyze the muscles that keep the brows low, allowing them to rise. This effect is mild, though – a surgical brow lift is much more effective at raising the brows. Also, the effects of Botox last only a few months, whereas the effects of brow lift surgery are generally permanent.

How many doctors should I consult with?
As many as you need to feel completely comfortable with the doctor you choose. Some patients are able to settle on their surgeon after only one consultation, while others require several to best compare their rapport with each doctor.

Do you use computers to change my pre-operative photos?
Yes, computer photo alterations can give you an idea of how your new brow position will look. Computer alterations are not very effective, however, at predicting the new appearance of the eyelids. In any case, altered photos will help you decide if surgery is right for you but will not guarantee a certain result.

Do I need to see my own doctor before a brow lift?
Basic lab tests may be required, and typically patients over the age of 45 require a written clearance from their personal physicians. All specific requirements are described in the attached Brow Lift Instructions .

What do I need to do the day before surgery?
The day before surgery, you should eat normally but avoid excessively heavy meals, or foods that can lead to acid reflux. Prepare your affairs so that you completely relax and rest after surgery. Most importantly, do not eat or drink anything after midnight before your procedure. See the attached Brow Lift Instructions for all suggestions.

Where does the surgery take place?
Procedures are done at the Aesthetic Facial Plastic Surgery Our Clinic, our fully accredited surgery center.

What kind of anesthetic will be used?
You will most likely be deeply sedated during the procedure, which means you will be completely asleep and comfortable, but breathing normally so no breathing tube is needed.

How long does the procedure take?
Brow lifts take about two hours to complete.

How much pain will I have after surgery?
Brow lift procedures do not lead to severe pain, but you will have mild soreness and tightness of your forehead. These symptoms are easily controlled with medications that we will prescribe for you. Approximately 10% of patients have headaches for the 24 hours after surgery that can be more intense.

What are the risks of surgery?
Adverse events are rare. One possible risk is permanent numbness of the forehead and scalp, which comes from nerve damage under the brows. Keep in mind that almost all patients have some numbness, but it is usually temporary. Your chances of permanent numbness are slightly higher with a coronal approach. Another possible risk is mild hair loss around the incisions. This risk is minimized with good surgical technique, and can easily be treated after your surgery. Other risks include possible infection, temporary headache, and mild bleeding.

Will I have scars?
The endoscopic and coronal approaches leave scars that are well hidden in your hair. The hairline approach leaves a scar at the top of your forehead, but hair will grow through the scar during the few months after surgery and make it very difficult to see.

How much time off should I take from work and exercising?
You should plan to take one to two weeks off of work, so swelling and bruising can resolve. Exercise should be avoided for about three weeks after surgery.

Do patients ever need another brow lift?
The benefits of brow lifts will last indefinitely, and revision surgery is quite rare. Occasionally, patients will want their brows raised even higher, which can be accomplished by revision surgery.