Macs Lift (Short Scar Face-Lift)

Your surgeon will always discuss with you and recommend the treatment that is appropriate for you. During the consultation, the surgeon will also explain the treatment, its results and benefits, the duration of the result and the frequency of repeating the treatment.


The MACS (Minimal Access Cranial Suspension) face-lift is a simple and effective face-lift operation that is designed to lift the lower two-thirds of the face. Only a limited amount of excess skin needs to be removed, and therefore there will be only an inconspicuous scar in the crease in the front of the ear and in the hairline above the ear. In contrast to most other techniques, this type of face-lift can be performed with local anaesthetic under light sedation. Therefore, you will not have to be admitted to the hospital and you can leave the clinic about 2 hours after surgery.


The MACS face-lift procedure is performed in our Harley Street clinic.


The MACS lift procedure is carried out under intravenous sedation so there will be no pain and you will sleep throughout the operation.


MACS lift procedure usually takes between two to two and a half hours and patients will return home the same day.


You will be given specific instructions on how to prepare for surgery, including guidelines on eating and drinking, smoking and taking or avoiding certain vitamins and medicines.

If you smoke, plan to quit at least two weeks prior to the surgery and not resume smoking for at least two weeks after your surgery. Avoid overexposure to the sun before the surgery, especially on the abdomen, and do not go on astringent diet, as both can inhibit your ability to heal. If you develop a cold or infection of any kind, it is important to inform the surgeon, as your surgery may need to be postponed.

You will need to arrange for someone to collect you after your surgery, as you will be unable to drive. It is also advisable to have someone to stay with you for a few days to help you out, if needed.


Two weeks before the surgery, you should not take any medications containing aspirin (acetylsalicylic acid), since these products affect the blood clotting mechanism and therefore may lead to excessive bleeding during and after surgery, hence resulting in increased bruising. Taking high doses of vitamin E, fish oil, eating large amounts of garlic and consuming alcohol can also produce the same result and should be avoided. If pain medication is necessary, we recommend you take Voltaren/paracetamol.

It is in your own best interests to quit smoking, at least two weeks before and until 2 weeks after surgery. It is well known that smoking causes narrowing of the blood vessels, which leads to a decreased blood supply to the skin, thus slowing and interfering with the healing process.

Be sure to inform your surgeon of any medications you take, as well as possible allergies including (drug, latex, plasters and so on). Your surgeon will decide whether preliminary examinations are necessary, such as blood tests, an electrocardiogram, or x-rays of the lungs. If this is the case, these tests should be performed several weeks before the surgery.

It is best not to wear any makeup when you come in for your operation. Wear loose clothing that doesn’t need to be pulled over your head; you may also want to bring a scarf to cover the bandages on the way home.

Do not eat or drink anything for 6 hours before your operation.

Make certain you have someone to collect you and stay with you overnight after the surgery. You are not allowed to drive a car for 48 hours after the surgery, due to the effects of the anaesthetic.


On the day of the operation, the surgeon will explain each step of the procedure, and the nurse will assist you throughout the operation. A local anaesthetic will be injected subcutaneously (under the skin) with a very fine needle. You will feel a slight sting and burning sensation, but that will disappear almost immediately. The anaesthetic will last about 2-3 hours. At the end of the operation, your face will be cleaned with a sterile solution; a dressing will then be applied as well as a facial band that will sit under chin and around the head.


After the surgery, when you have returned home, you should try to remain as quiet and relaxed as possible. Regularly apply ice to your neck and ear area for the first 12 hours to reduce swelling and bruising. When you lie down, keep your head elevated, because lying flat or bending down will increase the swelling.

You may also want to bring a scarf to cover the bandages on your way home.

You will be given pain medication and antibiotics to take, it is important to follow instructions given by the nurse on how to take these, continue not to take aspirin.

Because of the deep stitches, your jaw may hurt when you open your mouth wide. However, this sensation will pass in a few days.

You will be able to move and walk around as normal immediately after the surgery, but you should count on not being socially active for about one week. You will have to wear the facial band for 4 days, after which just the facial band will be removed, leaving just the small dressings covering the sutures (stitches). You will return to the clinic in 10 days for the removal of your sutures by the nurse, the surgeon may or may not see you now. Your next visit will be in another 5 weeks for a postoperative review with the surgeon.

If serious bleeding should suddenly occur within the first few hours after a facelift procedure, it might be necessary for the surgeon to open up the wound under local anaesthetic to stop the bleeding. Ecchymoses (bruises) will occur but these will fade over the first few weeks. Infection (or inflammations) and possible allergic reaction to the suture is very rare but when they occur, they can be treated with further treatments including antibiotics.


What results are to be expected?

The results may vary and will also depend on your looks before surgery. This can also depend on your specific expectations, as discussed in advance with your surgeon. Signs of ageing and weakening of the tissues will definitely be less conspicuous and may often virtually disappear. You do not have to worry about your individual features or expression. The feared “wind-tunnel” face-lift look, with flattening of the face, is caused by over-tightening the skin. However, in a modern face-lift and especially in a MACS-lift, the skin is tightened very little. Rather, the surgeon restores the volumes of the subcutaneous tissues, which restores the youthful contours of the face.

How long will the effects last?

You must realise that no cosmetic surgery procedure can stop time. A face-lift can, however, turn back the clock and be effective for a number of years. How long the effects last will also depend on your lifestyle and possibly genetic factors.

If you have any further questions or queries about this procedure, please feel free to call and speak to either Dr Roberto Viel, Dr Maurizio Viel or any of our nurses. Please note that it is necessary to attend a consultation prior to your operation, this is also the case with existing patients, it may also be necessary to have repeat blood tests.

To book an appointment for MACS Face lift, please call: 020 7636 4272

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