Aging of the Neck

While many of the concerns over aging are focused on the face, time also takes a significant toll on the delicate skin of the neck. Collagen and elastin, vital substances found in the dermal structure that contribute to the smooth, supple look of the skin, diminish over time. This depletion leads to skin laxity and the appearance of a “turkey wattle” at the front of the neck. The jawline also becomes less defined, further exacerbating the aged appearance.

If an aging neck has made you look older than you feel, a minimally invasive J-Plasty procedure can rejuvenate the area without extensive surgery or downtime. This neck lift approach works by using cool helium plasma, a cutting-edge technology and skin tightening treatment that can be used on the underside of the skin to improve the appearance of the neck. At Montecito Plastic Surgery, Dr. Lowenstein is excited to be among the first in the world offering this revolutionary new J-Plasma technology, right here in Santa Barbara.

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Minimally Invasive Neck Lift

Dr. Lowenstein is thrilled to offer a genuinely game-changing neck lift that provides results even he had previously not thought possible without extensive surgery. Using a cool helium plasma stream, Dr. Lowenstein is now able to perform skin tightening in combination with the traditional neck lift, creating a minimally-invasive outpatient procedure that produces impressive, immediate results. This new technique delivers superior results over a traditional neck lift alone, providing a safer way to enhance the outcomes of the procedure for a smoother, more youthful appearance to the neck.

The advancement that makes this minimally-invasive neck lift possible is an energized stream of helium gas that creates an extremely precise energy beam. The use of this energy stream on the underside of the skin produces a tightening effect previously unattainable by any other technique or technology. Because the plasma beam is more controlled, more precise, and cooler in temperature than standard lasers, the application of the beam on the underside of the skin is safe and does not damage the dermis the way lasers can and often do.

The controlled temperature creates an immediate tightening effect through tissue contraction, and as collagen is produced, the skin maintains its new shape and look. The procedure involves little discomfort, minimal downtime and offers excellent anti-aging results. Dr. Lowenstein advises patients to wear a compression garment for three days for best results, and sutures in three small and well-hidden incisions allow for a relatively easy return to your daily life.


What is J-Plasma?

Plasma is the fourth state of matter, an ionized gas with unique properties that are well-suited to skin tightening. Because lower temperatures are possible with helium plasma, and there is greater precision with this device than other types of energy, it offers superior results with fewer risks and side effects. Before its introduction on the aesthetic scene, plasma was successfully used to treat endometriosis. The precision of the plasma beam allowed for the removal of scar tissue from the bowels and colon without damaging the organs. When applied to aesthetic procedures, J-Plasma technology delivers a controlled beam of helium plasma to the underside of the dermal structure, providing a minimally invasive surgical approach to constricting tissue and stimulating collagen production. The addition of this step during a neck lift results in a smoother, tighter look to the outer surface of the skin, reducing the signs of aging in even patients who have experienced significant skin laxity.

What are the benefits of incorporating the plasma technique into a neck lift?

In addition to the superior results achieved by J-Plasty, this technique offers the following benefits during a neck lift:

  • Hardly any scarring associated with this procedure
  • Downtime and discomfort after surgery are minimal
  • Results become evident even as the procedure is performed
  • Improves the appearance of loose and crepey skin
  • Can be tailored to the precise needs of each patient

Who is a good candidate for the J-Plasty neck lift?

Patients who are unhappy with an aging neck due to skin laxity and a crepe-like appearance will benefit from this procedure. You should be in relatively good health and a non-smoker to reap the most significant outcomes. Dr. Lowenstein will help you determine whether the J-Plasty neck lift alone will provide you with the best results or if you should combine it with another surgical procedure to ensure all your goals are achieved in a single session.

Is this similar to a vampire lift?

The J-Plasty neck lift is not like the vampire lift in any way. The vampire lift is a non-surgical treatment that delivers platelets from the patient’s own blood into the dermal structure to promote cell renewal and collagen production. The J-Plasty neck lift is a minimally invasive surgery that truly tightens redundant skin on the neck from the inside out to produce a superior rejuvenation result.

What can I expect from the procedure?

Dr. Lowenstein performs the J-Plasty neck lift at his surgical suite at Montecito Plastic Surgery. The procedure may be done using local anesthesia with sedation or general anesthesia, depending on the preference of the patient and whether other surgeries will be performed at the same time. To lift and tighten your skin, a narrow tube known as a cannula is used to deliver the plasma directly into your treatment area. The use of the cannula also allows plasma to be administered at the same time liposuction is performed, since the procedures use similar tools. The J-Plasty neck lift is an outpatient procedure, so you will go home the same day to begin recovering in the comfort of your own home.

What is the recovery process like?

Immediately after your procedure, your skin may feel tight and sore in treated areas. You may also notice some mild bruising and swelling, but this is normal and will subside in the following weeks. Any discomfort you experience can be easily controlled with over-the-counter medications. Downtime after a J-Plasty neck lift is usually around six to seven days, but this may vary if other procedures were performed at the same time.

What can I expect from the results?

Improvements to skin laxity from the plasma delivery will likely be seen right away, but full results from your procedure will become more evident after surgery as swelling subsides. The neck will look smoother and more youthful while excess skin is completely removed. The results of a J-Plasty neck lift will last for many years before aging signs begin to creep in once again.

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