PDO Thread Lifts: Frequently Asked Questions
For decades, the only way to get rid of sagging skin on the face, neck, and other areas of the body was painful and expensive surgery. But most people simply do not want to incur the expense, discomfort, weeks of recovery, and the complications that can accompany a surgical face or body lift.
Now, a revolutionary, affordable, minimally invasive procedure called a “PDO thread lift” offers the skin-tightening benefits of a face lift – without surgery and with almost no downtime! Dr. Harper has been performing this phenomenal anti-aging procedure in her Austin, TX office for about 5 years now, with spectacular results.
But, many of our Austin, TX area patients still aren’t familiar with the many benefits of a PDO thread lift. So, in this article, anti-aging expert Dr. Ruthie Harper answers the most Frequently Asked Questions about PDO thread lifts.
What is a PDO thread lift?
During a non-surgical thread lift in our Austin, TX office, Dr. Harper will gently pull sagging skin back into its original youthful position. Then she inserts invisible sutures or “threads” beneath the skin that hold the skin in place – lifting and tightening the face, neck or other body part. Instead of painfully cutting off excess, loose skin, like facelift surgery, a thread lift simply puts skin back in place and holds it there, to restore youthful tone and tightness.
And, in addition to holding the skin in a more youthful position, the inserted threads also activate the body’s “healing response” which increases the production of collagen, elastin and hyaluronic acid. This results in thicker, younger, smoother, tighter and more elastic facial skin for benefits that last for years, even after the threads have dissolved.
Why is it a called a “PDO” thread lift?
The threads that are inserted under the skin in a thread lift are typically made of “Polydioxanone” – abbreviated as PDO – which is an FDA approved material that has been used in surgical sutures (“stitches”) for decades. PDO is an ideal choice of material for a thread lift because it safely dissolves over time and is naturally eliminated from the body.
Does a PDO thread lift hurt?
Before starting the thread lift procedure in our Austin, TX office, a numbing cream or anesthetic injection (similar to what is used in the dentist’s office) will be used so that you do not feel any discomfort. The numbing cream is typically used for shorter sutures, while an injection of local anesthesia will generally be used for longer threads.
Patients remain awake and alert, and may feel some pressure, but they do not feel any pain during the insertion process. Afterwards, there may be some tenderness as the anesthetic wears off, which is generally easy to mange with Tylenol or ice packs.
What areas can be tightened with a PDO thread lift?
The most common use of the PDO thread lift is to tighten sagging skin on the neck, cheeks, jaw line (jowls) and eyebrow area. However, PDO thread lifts are also highly effective for lifting and tightening the skin on the breasts, buttocks, knees and arms.
What are the advantages of a PDO thread lift over facelift surgery?
PDO thread lifts offer quick recovery together with excellent results. The primary advantages of a thread lift over facelift surgery are:
• More Affordable • No incisions • No scarring • Local anesthetic • No hospitalization • Immediate results • No dangerous side effects • No long recovery period
Who is a good candidate for a PDO thread lift?
A PDO thread lift is suitable for almost any adult woman or man in good health, who would like tighter skin and wants to improve the sinking and sagging of skin that happens with time, making us look old and tired. Most thread lift patients in our Austin, TX office are between the ages of 40 and 70.
Thread lifts are most effective on skin with light to moderate sagging – and the long-lasting results are the ideal middle ground between short-lived fillers or Botox and drastic facelift surgery. Unlike “injectables” such as Juvéderm and Botox, thread lifts last for years – and yet it is still a minimally invasive procedure with very little downtime.
Is a PDO thread lift dangerous?
While no procedure is completely without risk, PDO thread lifts are among the safest minimally invasive aesthetic procedures. Typically, there are only minimal side effects such as mild bruising or swelling, or tenderness in the treated area.
When performed by a skilled and experienced physician like Dr. Ruthie Harper in Austin, TX, there is very little risk of complication and these minor side-effects will only last a few days.
How long does a PDO thread lift take?
First, time must be allowed for the numbing cream or local anesthetic to take effect. Then the length of the procedure will depend on the size and number of areas being treated, and the number of filaments (“threads”) that Dr. Harper uses.
A typical thread lift takes about an hour to perform, but Dr. Harper will advise you in advance specifically how much time will be needed for your customized procedure.
How much downtime is there after a PDO thread lift procedure?
The recovery time after a PDO thread lift is typically only a day or two. For the first couple of days most patients experience some mild swelling and slight bruising and tenderness. Ice compresses can help reduce the swelling and minimize any discomfort.
Many patients choose to have a thread lift on Friday, so they are ready to return to work (or Zoom meetings) by Monday. However, complete recovery time can take about a week – and strenuous exercise or activity must be avoided for two to three weeks after the thread lift. Patients should also avoid air travel for 48-72 hours after their thread lift.
How long do PDO thread lift results last?
The longevity of a thread lift depends upon the age of the patient, the condition of their skin at the time of procedure, and the amount of sagging that was corrected. While the PDO threads themselves dissolve over six months, they have already stimulated the body’s natural production of collagen and elastin. So, the new fibrous connective tissue that has grown around the sutures will continue to plump and tighten skin, on average, for two to three years.
Obviously, it is impossible to stop the aging process entirely, so sagging will eventually return over time – at which point it is possible to have Dr. Harper insert additional filaments when they become needed.
What happens if a thread breaks after my procedure?
PDO threads are extremely durable, and are even used in many major surgical procedures such as heart surgery. Even if a single PDO thread should break, no structural support will be lost. Dr. Harper always inserts multiple PDO threads in an area to ensure a strong hold and long-lasting results.
As the threads gradually dissolve (or if they eventually break) the newly generated collagen fibers take over and continue to hold the skin in place.
When will I see results from a PDO thread lift?
One of the best things about a PDO thread lift is that dramatic results are immediately visible, as the inserted sutures are used to pull the skin taught into its original position. Optimal results will continue to improve over the next 2 to 6 months as the body continues to produce new collagen fibers in the treated area. So, even after the threads dissolve over six months, the skin-tightening results will typically be maintained for a number of years!
PDO Thread Lifts – Austin, TX
If you would like to look like a younger, healthier version of yourself – without surgery and with very little downtime – schedule a consultation with Dr. Ruthie Harper, MD in Austin, TX. See how a non-surgical PDO thread lift can turn-back the-clock and help you look as young on the outside as you feel on the inside!