It is not surprising that most patients are concerned about neck liposuction incision, which inevitably leads to scar. Nonetheless, not all scars are bad, particularly when they are made remarkably small and are placed in discreet areas, allowing them to blend well into the background.
Renowned Los Angeles plastic surgeon Dr. Tarick Smiley has explained the two neck liposuction incision placements and how the patient’s underlying anatomy and fat location determine the ideal approach.
- Single incision under the chin
A small round incision is specifically placed within the skin fold for optimal scar concealment. This incision technique is only suitable for patients with minimal to moderate amount of fat that is mainly limited to the center of the neck.
- Two additional incisions behind the ears, ideally in the earlobe crease
Apart from the incision beneath the chin, patients who need more correction—i.e., they have a full neck fat that extends beyond the center—will need additional incisions behind the ears. This technique allows the surgeon to “attack” the excess fats from different directions, a technique that is tied to smoother and more natural results.
In fact, best results are usually obtained with the additonal incisions behind the ears.
Aside from the incision placement, another critical issue is how much fat remains afterwards. Contrary to popular belief, great resutls are achieved when enough fat is preserved during surgery, as it serves as a “carpeting” that will prevent the platysma muscle from becoming visible neck bands.
The ideal amount of fat that is removed during surgery also depends on the patient’s skin elasticity. Therefore, someone who is relatively young and possesses good skin shrinkage generally tolerates a more aggressive approach than someone with reduced skin elasticity.
For instance, Dr. Smiley has recently performed neck liposuction in which around 300 cc of fat was removed. While it may sound an excessive amount, for this particular patient it was the right volume due to the extent of her full neck and her good skin shrinkage, which could be attributed to her young age.
However, the same amount of volume might be considered “too much” when the surgery involves older patients who generally have reduced skin elasticity, unless a concurrent neck lift (or skin excision-based surgery) is performed as well to prevent sagging appearance.