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A minimally invasive option to improve facial sagging

Last Modified: April 02, 2021

Family Medicine


This post was written by Nicole Heller, MSN, FNP-C, PPG – Plastic Surgery, Radiance Plastic Surgery, Aesthetics & Skincare.

Radiance Plastic Surgery, Aesthetics & Skincare is proud to offer a new exclusive, minimally invasive procedure that helps our patients defy gravity without surgical intervention.

PDO thread lifts are dissolvable sutures that have been used safely for decades to close incisions following surgical procedures. The industry has applied the absorbable suture technology and modified it to work on an aesthetic level.

There are many different types of threads that we can use. We customize our approach based on each patient’s particular area of concern. There are threads for lifting and tightening, and threads to help produce additional collagen to improve scaring, wrinkling, poor texture and/or deep neck lines. This procedure is safe and recommended for all skin types.

During the treatment, the threads are introduced through a port with a blunt cannula that glides through the patient’s dermis and is pulled to create a skin lifting and instant tightening affect. It also helps promote collagen production and neovascularization to help renew the skin at a cellular level. Many patients will notice an instant lift but also note increased improvement a month later. With threads utilized for collagen production, it can take at least one month for the patient to notice improvement.

Threads can be used in conjunction with Botox, fillers and skin resurfacing procedures. There are no contraindications. Threads are very versatile and can be used in a number of different treatment areas.

The following areas can all be treated using this approach:

  • Mid face lift: addresses nasolabial folds, marionette lines, jowls
  • Jawline contour
  • Neck lift
  • Neck contouring/sagging
  • Neck rhytids
  • Cheeks
  • Brow lift
  • Fox eyes
  • Angry 11s
  • Forehead
  • Lip flip
  • Tear trough
  • Acne scarring
  • Stretch marks
  • “Mommy Tummy” belly lift
  • Bat wing/underarm lift
  • Butt lift
  • Knee lift

The most common treatment area where we utilize threads is the lower face/neck region, as this is the area that tends to be neglected through the aging process and becomes most noticeable as a sign of aging for patients.


Patients experience minimal discomfort with this procedure. The procedure itself takes less than an hour, depending on the treatment areas and patients can return to work with no downtime afterward.

We do recommend that patients stop consuming alcohol, ginko, fish oil supplements, vitamin E, doing high intensity workouts and sitting in saunas for 1-2 days prior to their appointment to help reduce the overall risk of bruising after the procedure. There is a noted initial phase of inflammation that may cause minimal swelling for 3-5 days after the procedure. Patients can apply ice, sleep with their head elevated and/or take anti-inflammatories to relieve this symptom.

As with any type of closure or surgery, patients will experience a pulling or tightening feeling for a period of time following the treatment. This should subside once the body relaxes around the change. Patients may notice a pulling sensation when moving their face from side to side. This can take 2-4 weeks to resolve. The sutures will completely dissolve within six months of the procedure. 

Since each patient’s goal is specific to them, there may be instances when a patient has excessive volume loss and facial sagging that requires more than one treatment. Treatments can be completed four weeks apart until we reach the maximum potential or the patient’s desired outcome. Many times patients will only require one thread lift and have impressive results for up to three years.

Patients who pursue thread lift will notice immediate improvement and continued change for up to two months. Areas such as neck rhytids, where we need to correct deep lines, may take longer to notice as these require the production of the patient’s own collagen. 

After treatment patients will want to sleep with the head of the bed elevated and on their back to reduce swelling. We advise that patients avoid any dental procedures that would involve keeping their mouth open for long periods of time for the first two weeks after the procedure. They will also want to avoid high intensity exercise, bending over for long periods of time, heavy lifting and saunas for about a week.


This patient was treated in our office using the PDO thread lift procedure.

Face lift

Thread lift

thread lift

On the left is the before and right is immediately after. She had a midface lift to address her nasolabial folds, marionette lines and jowls. She had a neck lift completed as well. Patient also received a brow lift to address some asymmetry.

April special

During the month of April, enjoy 25% off any procedure with purchase of a SkinMedica® product. To schedule a consult with Nicole Heller, NP, call 260-425-6960.

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