Endoscopic forehead lift: review of technique, cases, and complications

Plast Reconstr Surg. 2002 Nov;110(6):1558-68; discussion 1569-70. doi: 10.1097/01.PRS.0000029815.87106.CB.


Endoscopy has provided a significant improvement in the surgical rejuvenation of the upper face. It offers a minimally invasive alternative that avoids many of the undesirable effects associated with the coronal approach. The standard minimal access forehead endoscopic procedure consists of a subperiosteal undermining through three small triangular prehairline incisions. To successfully elevate the eyebrows, it is essential to release the periosteum at the level of the supraorbital rims and ablate the brow depressor muscles of the glabella. Until the periosteum reattaches itself, elevation is maintained by a temporary suspension suture between staples at the incision sites and 5 cm posterior to the hairline. The transverse closure of the triangular skin incisions achieves some additional elevation. The biplanar approach adds a partial subcutaneous undermining of the forehead to the endoscopic technique and allows plication of the frontalis muscle and excision of excess forehead skin. It is offered to patients with very ptotic eyebrows, deep transverse wrinkles, or a high forehead. The prehairline incision is a disadvantage but is tolerated quite well in older patients. The medical records of 393 consecutive patients who underwent endoscopic forehead lift from 1994 to 2000 were reviewed. Because seven patients had the endoscopic forehead lift repeated, the number of forehead endoscopies totaled 400. The complication rate was quite acceptable and did not markedly increase when a forehead lift was performed in combination with other facial procedures. The endoscopic forehead lift consistently attenuated the transverse forehead wrinkles, reduced the glabellar frown lines, and raised the eyebrows. It provided an appearance that was less tired and angry in addition to opening the area around the eyes. Long-term follow-up has shown that the endoscopic forehead lift produces lasting and predictable results.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Aging
  • Child
  • Endoscopy / methods*
  • Female
  • Forehead / surgery*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Rhytidoplasty / methods*