The history of facelift spans the last century where mankind started to be concerned over the signs of ageing and desired for a reverse in time. With age, the skin gradually loses its elasticity. Without the ability to contract back to a tight shape, it starts to sag more. Gravity also tugs the layer of fat tissues underneath the skin. A popular solution is a facelift.
While facelifts are tried-and-tested, safe procedures, some patients seek for a less-invasive option with a similar outcome. A PDO threadlift involves the insertion of small barbed sutures underneath the skin along key areas of the face and pulled tighter to combat sagging. PDO stands for Polydioxanone, a material used to make these threads.
PDO threads are:
- SAFE : commonly used in cardiac and surgical sutures
- Naturally broken down over months
- No cones = no tissue damage
- Barely visible due to the transparent material
There are typically 3 different PDO threads available with barbed and smooth threads of varying thickness and lengths. The treatment plan is dependent on one’s desired outcome, area of focus, aesthetic needs and lifestyle habits.
Mono threads are single PDO filaments where the threads are smooth and made without barbs. The maximum skin tightening effect is achieved when these threads are inserted in a mesh-like pattern from all directions. After insertion, they activate collagen synthesis for both tightening and cell rejuvenation. Although mono threads evenly tighten the skin, lifting is not very pronounced. About 10-30 mono threads are required for any given treatment area.
Areas benefited by Mono Threads: Sagging necks, forehead lines, sunken cheeks and facial wrinkles.
Perks: No such dangers of over-pulling or dimpling
Cog threads are similar to mono threads but differentiate themselves by the barbs that attach to the underside of the skin. Barbs effectively suspend tissue structure to lift sagging skin and add support to the skin structure. This creates more of an obvious lift. Cog threads also facilitates collagen formation around the threads. When paired with Mono threads, the result is firm and smooth skin.
Areas benefited by Cog Threads: Jowls, eyebrow, nose.
Screw threads help in plumping up facial volume over sunken areas. One or two threads (multi-screw) intertwining the inserting needle augment the final lifting result.
Areas benefited by Screw Threads: Cheeks, undereye, temples
What are the results of PDO Threadlift?
- Improvements skin elasticity and texture
- Smoothens wrinkles
- Brightens skin tone
- Rejuvenate and lifts the skin
- Redefine facial contours
- Masks the appearance of unsightly forehead veins
Which areas can I lift?
Being versatile, PDO threads can used on any parts of the face and some body areas.
- Hooded eyelids
- Crow’s feet
- Undereye area
- Wrinkles around the mouth
- Nasolabial folds
- Shoulders, knees, calves and forearms
Why choose The Chelsea Clinic for PDO threadlifts?
Our doctors use quality threads made in Korean and adopt the latest techniques. Dr Ewen Chee, The Chelsea Clinic’s medical director, is Asia’s regional trainer for PDO threadlift procedures. Dr Chee has also graced several medical conferences including APEM and Congresso SIME 2017 as a key speaker and trainer. The results and durability of PDO threadlifts are based on a doctor’s techniques and skills, track record and experience in the treatment.
The Chelsea Clinic also provides anaesthesia for your comfort, dedicated post-treatment care and support. Two to three sessions of reviews will be arranged after the treatment to make sure that your threads are in place.
How long do the effects last?
Depending on factors like age, lifestyle habits and facial movement patterns, PDO threadlifts can last between 1 to 1.5 years. At 1-2 months, a rejuvenation effect can be observed and you will start to notice an improved skin texture, firmer and smoother skin*. After a 6 months mark, collagen production peaks and the results of PDO threadlifts gradually gets better. In fact, additional threads can be inserted at a later date if one wishes for more lifting or longer-lasting effects.
*It depends on whether your doctor focuses on skin lifting or skin rejuvenation. The technique employed and threads used are also equally important.
Will threads break?
Thread breakage was once more common with older Aptos threads and older methods of suturing. With new technology and the high tensile strength of threads, it becomes rarer for threads to break. Breakage mainly happens at the ends where the threads meet the incision.
Poor care, excessive facial movement, unnecessary rubbing are other prime factors that may cause threads to break. Once the incision heals, the threads will be more set in place. Authentic quality threads are strong and do not decay.
How do I know if my threads are not in place or have broken?
Some common signs include:
- Visible threads: Threads should be implanted deep and out of sight. A visibly upwards mitigated thread is an indication that threads have broken.
- Decline in appearance: PDO Threadlifts should last for minimally six months. If that does not happen for you, you might have a loose thread somewhere.
- Extrusion: Noticeable but painless extruded threads peeking from within your skin is not a good sign.
Although not danagerous or life-threatening, should you experience any of these symptoms, do return to consult your physician. Meanwhile, DO NOT prod, scratch or tug at any of the broken thread.
Extrusions can be easily fixed by trimming and resealing the thread. Broken threads can be treated by reshaping the tissues.
What is the downtime for threadlift and do they have any side effects?
As PDO threadlifts are minimally invasive, recovery is relatively quick. Unlike full surgical facelifts, swelling or bruising will dissipate quickly and one should be back to full functionality within a week. The face may feel tight for a couple of days before the PDO threads sink into place.
But do note that PDO threadlifts may not be for everybody. Patients with moderate age-related facial sagging and the right skin condition may benefit more than patients with serious sagging skin who may require surgical attention.
Will PDO threads be sufficient for my sagging skin?
PDO threadlifts work particularly well with other minimally-invasive treatments such as Ultherapy or HIFU (High Intensity Frequency Ultrasound) to give a more pronounced, yet natural lifting effect. Ageing can also bring about the loss of facial volume. Sometimes, PDO threads are combined with biotimulating fillers such as Teosyal or Juverderm to plump up sunken cheeks or forehead for a more youthful outlook.
There are many clinics out there offering PDO threadlifts and marketing advertisements with fancy names. Now that we’ve enlightened you with the basics of PDO threadlifts, we hope that you are well-informed enough to make a good choice!
If you’re interested in rejuvenating your appearance with The Chelsea Clinic, contact us at HERE to see how our team can help you!