Today, surgeons are equipped with a repertoire of procedures aimed at rejuvenating facial features. One technique used to lift sagging features – typically in the mid-face – to create a fresher, more contoured look, is a thread lift. By inserting threads into the cheek area, not only can the cheek be suspended to a higher position, but collagen production can also be stimulated, thus improving the hydration, tone and texture of the skin.
Thread lifting is a minimally invasive technique that elevates the soft tissues of the face using specially designed internal sutures and can deliver subtle yet effective results. The procedure involves the use of multiple fine biocompatible threads to lift and support sagging skin on the face and neck. Tiny ‘nicks’ are made to the skin, which are hidden in the sideburn area. Threads are then looped to the sagging soft tissues that support the face and neck, lifting and anchoring the facial tissue to an elevated, more youthful position.
This process allows the threads to have a firm hold on the underlying tissues, without causing trauma to the outer layers. Acting as a kind of scaffolding, the soft barbs gently hold to the tissue as they lift the skin, complementing the natural line of the face or neck. Once in position, the body generates new collagen that surrounds each thread to maintain the lifting effect. Excess skin is then removed through a fine incision along the ear.
New-generation threads are completely absorbable. This means the threads dissolve within around nine to 12 months, whilst maintaining the revitalising and lifting effect for several years to come.
The procedure is typically performed under local anaesthetic and usually takes around one hour to perform. Patients can usually return home within one to two hours after the procedure. However, patients should be aware the threads take a few weeks to settle and integrate properly with the skin.
This procedure does not replace a conventional facelift; rather, it offers patients a minimally invasive approach to address the early signs of facial ageing. Results tend to last around two to four years.