Question: My sister had a facelift and it took her a full 5 months to get where she was truly happy and pleased with her results. She had bruising and swelling for quite some time. Is her situation unusual or is this normal after facelift surgery?
Answer: There can be some degree of mild swelling for several months following a facelift, although most swelling will resolve after a couple months. Swelling can be reduced by keeping the head elevated as much as possible following surgery, wearing compression garments, and avoiding strenuous activity for several weeks after surgery. Bruising tends to resolve more quickly than swelling and typically follows the time course for bruising in other areas of the patient’s body. It would be unusual to have bruising longer than 1 month, and it can often be camouflaged by make-up even earlier.