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    Post Operative


    Temporary bruising, swelling and numbness are common the first night after surgery.  You may need to go to the bathroom frequently during the night because of the IV fluids you were given during your surgery. Drink a lot of fluids in order to keep up with this fluid loss. As your body begins to balance itself out, it will rid itself of this extra “water weight” and everything will return back to normal. Most patients describe their forehead as feeling “tight” and somewhat numb the night of surgery. Although pain is rarely an issue, you will be provided with pain medications should you need them during the after surgery.


    The next morning following your surgery, you will return to Dr Motykie’s office for your first post-operative visit.  Upon arrival to the office you will be escorted to a private examination room where your operative sites will be evaluated. After your examination, you will be allowed to return back to your home. All of your questions will be answered and you will be given instructions for the following week.

    • Dressings: There will be no dressings to take care of after a browlift surgery.
    • Diet: Mostly patients start with a liquid diet the night after surgery. Usually by the next day most patients are back to a normal diet.
    • Medications: Some swelling, bruising and discomfort are normal immediately following surgery and it is typically controlled with your prescription pain medication. Do not take any other pain medication including Tylenol, aspirin or ibuprofen in combination with your pain medications unless you are given permission by Dr Motykie. You should begin you prescription antibiotics the morning following surgery and continue them for one week after surgery. A combination of Arnica Montana and Bromelain are encouraged after surgery in order to promote your healing process.
    • Bathing: Showering and bathing are permitted the very next day after surgery. A large amount of conditioner may help to wash and clean hair that has become matted or knotted following the surgery.
    • Activity: Light activity is allowed and encouraged including moving about your house and going for walks outside in order to aid the circulation in your lower extremities. However, no heavy lifting or strenuous activity should be attempted during your first week of recovery.  You can usually return to a desk-type job within 72 hours, physical exercise generally can be resumed two weeks after surgery.

    A browlift is not very painful post-operatively because the undermined skin is typically numb for at least a week or so. The brow will feel tight and lifted but there should not be significant tenderness. Patient may wash their hair as soon as the next day after surgery as long as a modest amount of conditioner is used to help dissolve and residual blood and tangling of the hair. Patients must be cautious when applying hot water, hair dryers and combing of the hair because the scalp is numb and they may cause damage to the skin and/or hair.  Specific instructions regarding exercise will also be provided. Strenuous activity will be restricted for the first few weeks after surgery. You will most likely be able to return to work within a few days depending on your job. Aerobic and impact cardio exercise should be avoided for one to two weeks post-operatively. Weight lifting should be avoided for 3-4 weeks post-operatively. The resumption of and amount of physical /athletic activity should be guided by the level of patient discomfort with “pain” being the ultimate guide.


    Your brow may be bruised, swollen, and uncomfortable for a day or two, but the pain shouldn’t be severe. Any discomfort you do feel can be relieved with your prescribed. Some people can return to work after a few days and some after one week. Most patients can drive their vehicles within a few days after surgery, but plan on having someone drive you to your first few post-operative visits anyway. In regards to an exercise program, use common sense and use pain as your guide; if it hurts, simply don’t do it!  The majority of patients are allowed to return to light, low impact cardiovascular exercise after the first week of recovery. You can expect some loss of feeling in your forehead, caused by the swelling after surgery. This numbness usually fades away as the swelling subsides over the several weeks or so. The staples in your hairline or the sutures in a pre-hairline incision will be removed at one week after surgery.

    • Medications: Some continued swelling, bruising and discomfort are normal and they are typically controlled with your prescription pain medication.  Arnica Montana and Bromelain may be continued for another week in order to promote your healing process.
    • Bathing: You may bath and shower freely one week after surgery.
    • Activity: Exercise of some sort is very important, even if it is just walking around your house. Having said this, rest is also important to the healing process and heavy lifting and strenuous activity are still restricted during the first month after surgery. You will be able to return to more strenuous exercise/heavy lifting at 3-4 weeks after surgery.

    During this time period, there may be some minimal pain, but it can typically be treated with your prescription pain medications. Heavy lifting or straining should be avoided after surgery but you can typically return to work within a week and to full activity within a few weeks. Sensation in your scalp may be reduced temporarily and is almost always temporary. The feeling will begin to return over the first few weeks after surgery and the scalp will begin to become “itchy” as the nerves begin to reawaken. Be careful with washing, combing and/or curling your hair until feeling returns completely or you can possibly damage the follicles without even knowing it.  Numbness in the anterior scalp can be expected after a browlift and is almost always temporary. As the sensation returns and the nerves heal, patients often experience itching which may be reduced by taking an antihistamine such as Claritin or Benadryl.


    Depending on the amount of physical exertion required to perform your expected duties, you should already be back into your normal rhythm at work. Exercise and workout routines may begin at this point in your recovery process with pain as your ultimate guide. Any activity that causes discomfort and/or pain needs to be avoided until further along in your recovery process. When you return to the activity, start at half speed and increase to your normal routine as long as you do not feel any pain during and/or the day after your workout. The majority of browlift patients are back to their regular workout routine within 3-4 weeks after their surgery.

    During this period, sensory changes in the scalp are normal and only temporary. Typically, normal sensitivity will return slowly over time. Lastly, as sensation begins to return to the scalp, some patients experience itchiness in the hairline. This is also completely normal and temporary, and is a sign that normal sensation is beginning to return to the scalp. The scalp heals quickly over time and the location of the hairline incision often hides any trace of the scar. Over the next several months many of the benefits of your brow lift surgery will begin to materialize and you will begin to enjoy the transformation you have received form your rejuvenation surgery.


    All patients vary in their ability and speed to recovery after surgery but most commonly you can expect the final result from surgery to be evident at six months after surgery.  By this point in time, the hairline incisions will have healed completely and you should be enjoying your natural, more youthful appearance. Although the forehead is not paralyzed after surgery, transverse wrinkling and glabellar lines (the “11”s) are significantly reduced.  After the surgery most patients report that acquaintances will tell them they look “rested” or that they have a more “pleasant” expression. Life-long sun protection and a healthy lifestyle will help to maintain and extend the results of your rejuvenated, more youthful appearance.

    To find out more about Brow Lifts please contact us at 310-246-2355

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