Deep-Plane Facelift vs. SMAS: Which Is Best?

Chicago woman wondering about deep plane facelift and SMAS, and which is right for her.

The goal of facelift surgery is not to alter a patient’s appearance but to help them look like a younger version of themselves with lasting results. But not all plastic surgeons in Chicago who specialize in facelift surgery use the same techniques to create those natural-looking results. The 2 most common techniques used now are the deep-plane and the (SMAS) facelifts.

Whether one is better than the other is the subject of much discussion among surgeons, and it’s worth knowing the differences between the 2 if you are looking for the best facelift surgeon in Chicago.

The Recent History of Facelift Surgery

Advanced techniques developed during the last 30 years have fundamentally changed the way facelift surgery is performed. As aesthetic surgeons gained more understanding about how aging affects the skin and the role that loss of facial volume plays as we age, facelift surgery put less emphasis on pulling the skin tight. Instead, surgeons now minimize aging’s effects by repositioning the soft tissues and muscle below the skin to a more youthful position, along with restoring volume using fat transfer techniques.

The SMAS Facelift

Both the superficial musculoaponeurotic system (SMAS) and deep-plane facelifts target the lower two-thirds of the face and address sagging skin, excess fat, jowls, and loss of volume in the cheeks. A deep-plane approach also improves the appearance of the neck. Surgeons developed the SMAS technique as a less invasive alternative to traditional facelift surgery, and it represented a significant advance aesthetically, producing results that appeared more natural. The procedure involves making incisions at the temples above the hairline, so they’re concealed. Compared to a deep-plane lift, the primary difference in the SMAS technique is that it raises the skin and SMAS layers separately rather than together.

Our Approach to Facelift Surgery

Comparing the results of cosmetic surgery results is difficult because patients present unique conditions and various factors influence the final outcomes. Over time, however, we can assess the benefits and limitations of different surgical approaches and assess which one provides the most consistently excellent results that last the longest.

Dr. Mustoe and Dr. Sinno believe that’s the deep-plane approach. In fact, Dr. Mustoe developed his own modified version of the deep-plane facelift documented in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, one of the most respected medical journals in the world. Using this technique, our surgeons reposition the superficial facial musculature and fatty tissue to a more youthful position. They avoid the unnatural stretched or pulled look that plagues some facelift results by selectively undermining the skin and carrying it along with the deeper tissues.

As mentioned, facelift specialists such as Dr. Mustoe and Dr. Sinno understand that restoring facial volume is essential for producing the best results, and they use advanced fat transfer techniques to accomplish this goal.

Based on years of experience and research, Dr. Mustoe believes that his deep-plane technique produces longer-lasting results than a SMAS facelift.

However, not all plastic surgeons have the necessary training to offer a deep-plane facelift and use the SMAS technique for their patients. Dr. Mustoe and Dr. Sinno have the training and experience to tailor surgical plans to each facelift patient’s unique needs. You can see the results for yourself by browsing our gallery of before-and-after photos featuring many of our previous patients.

If you’re considering facelift surgery in Chicago and want to learn more about our surgeons’ approach to the procedure, contact us using the online form to request a consultation or call our office at (312) 788-2560 to schedule an appointment.

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