In recent years, pdo thread lift procedures have steadily gained popularity amongst practitioners and patients alike.

Due to PDO threads lifting effect, as well as ability to boost and stimulate collagen synthesis and production while the threads gradually dissolve under the skin over time they are becoming one of the most highly sought-after non-surgical procedures
From little to no down time, immediate and more natural results (as compared to fillers) there are many factors that make thread lift an attractive option for those seeking non-surgical procedures, due to it being low risk and minimally-invasive.
However, as with any aesthetic and cosmetic procedures, low risk does not mean no risk.

Possible Complications of Thread Lift

Thread lift procedures are known, and have been proven, to be extremely safe. Despite so, complications and risks are ever present; just like in any medical procedure. 

In any procedure, complications can occur. Therefore, it is important for a practitioner to be equipped with the right techniques, skills, knowledge and ability to manage them should they occur. Which is why at Flawless Aesthetic Clinic, I manage your care by following up and dealing with any complications as they arise. I am the only clinic offering a follow up consultation after the procedure for free.

The Top Complications are:

Discomfort and Pain: One of the top most common complaints and reported “complications” is discomfort and pain. While minimally-invasive, thread lift procedures are not entirely pain-free. Following the lift at home some ‘popping’ and ‘twanging’ sensations can be felt. This is the barbs on the COG threads which have small teeth to attach and pull up the skin. 

As with any aesthetic and cosmetic procedure, minimal discomfort and pain is to be expected. This can be minimised and managed by applying/administering local anaesthesia which is done prior to treatment. The threads cannot break once inserted, but can further tighten over the following weeks. Post treatment advice is given and patients can take analgesia if needed for up to their review/follow up appointment.

Bruising, Swelling and Soreness: Although it is one of the most minimally-invasive procedures there are the market today, patients do some times experience post-procedural bruising, swelling and soreness. If not the most commonly reported complication, it is still one of the top.

While often not defined as a complication, bruising, swelling and soreness associated with thread lift usually subside over a period of 1 to 4 weeks as the threads tighten and then eventually dissolve under the skin. I provide a cold pack and recommend patients to ice the affected area and avoid; excessive facial movements, sleeping directly on the face, shaving, using harsh cleansers, strenuous exercise as well as massaging or rubbing the affected area to minimise this.

Patient Dissatisfaction: Similar to the classification of discomfort, pain, bruising, swelling and soreness, some studies do not define patient dissatisfaction as a complication, as this is often attributed to the discrepancy between patients’ expectations and actual results.

Patient dissatisfaction is often not considered as a complication. Yet, it is equally important, if not more so, that patients walk away satisfied. Managing patient satisfaction is crucial and it begins from the minute a patient walks in. I always try to set realistic expectations with the patient during consultation, I explain this is a 0.5-1cm lift per thread and will not change their face entirely, I try to help them understand the limits of thread lift and at review/follow up include extra threads if it’s agreed and it is needed. Patients must allow at least 8 – 12 weeks before an event they may want the treatment for.

Patients may develop haematoma when an injury/damage the wall of a blood vessel causing blood to seep out into the surrounding area during the procedure. As the nature of aesthetic treatments involves needles to the face some bruising is normal and cannot always be avoided, which may last several weeks.

Although some patients do not bruise, I always state I cannot guarantee they will not and so advise if they have a social event coming up or are worried people will know they have had a procedure it’s best to book a few weeks ahead. Bruising can be minimised by using the cool packs, avoiding anti inflammatory medication and alcohol. After the initial insertion points are completely healed, usually after 24 hours, then make up can be used. 

Infection: Another possible complication that may arise from the performing of a thread lift procedure is infection. Despite it being uncommon, infection associated to the procedure can occur.

In all the years of doing PDO threads I have never had a case of infection, however, if one did arise, as a nurse prescriber I am able to prescribe antibiotics if this was to happen.

Facial Asymmetry: Very few peoples faces are symetrical in the first place. Facial asymmetry is caused by various factors such as the use of anaesthetic, and/or inadequate lift in one side. Facial symmetry  is usually a benefit of the treatment.

It is important to always go through a thorough consultation session with the patient so as to highlight any inherent facial asymmetry to the patient as well as manage expectations pre-procedure and take photographs. 

Protrusion, Extrusion and Migration of Threads: Protrusion, extrusion and migration of threads, if any, are due to threads being weak or when an inserted thread overlays an area of aggressive animation.

Protrusion, extrusion and migration of threads is very rare and I have only come across 2 cases. This can be addressed by injecting fillers such as hyaluronic acid (HA) in the superficial layer where the suture can be seen. Removal of threads is rarely necessary, but is an option.

Dimpling/Puckering & Irregularities: Dimpling and irregularities can occur in a patient, post-procedure. One of the most common areas of occurrence is in the subcutaneous tissue of a “sunken cheek” and/or in the oral angle areas where there might be excessive facial expressions/movements.

Some patients may need a tighter lift or have very thin skin, which may result in puckering, which does settle. As above with protrusion, this can be easily corrected and I have had to carry this out once following someone else’s work (another clinic) which left severe puckering for a client.

Despite all the above possible complications that can result from thread lift, the general consensus is that thread lift procedure is one of the most advanced, minimally-invasive and safest non-surgical procedures. By understanding the cause, effects and right procedures to manage the different possible complications, Flawless Aesthetic Clinic can safely deliver the best results in patients.

To discuss in more detail and have a facial assessment BOOK NOW.

Possible Complications of Thread Lift

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