Clin Surg | Volume 2, Issue 1 | Case Report | Open Access

Aesthetica in Practice: The Flick Lift in Assisting Closure of Large Cutaneous Excisional Defects on Face

Michael F. Klaassen, James D. Frame* and Paul Levick

1Department of Plastic Surgeon, University of Auckland, New Zealand
2Department of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, Anglia Ruskin University, UK
3Honorary Senior Lecturer Anglia Ruskin University, UK

*Correspondance to: James D. Frame 

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Aesthetica is a term being used to describe the aesthetic reconstruction of congenital or acquired deformity. Plastic Surgeons seek to deliver function, form and cosmesis during any reconstruction but Cosmetic Surgery techniques commonly used in the private sector have evolved far in advance of what is delivered in state funded hospitals, meaning that there is room to improve aesthetic outcomes in select patients. Extensive facial solar damage and malignancy is commonly seen in the elderly and if the surgery option is to be taken then wide excisional defects can create a challenge for the reconstructive surgeon. Primary closure may be impossible, local flaps may be under undue tension and sutures may ‘cheese-wire’ the tissues. Skin grafts may succeed at the expense of poor cosmesis and delayed healing at donor site. The Superficial Musculo-Aponeurotic system (SMAS) is routinely used to relocate and provide fixation of skin and superficial fat during face-lifting. This principle can be applied to take the tension off skin closures particularly in the elderly patient, preferentially under local anaesthetic, with very acceptable cosmetic outcomes. We have adapted the minimally traumatic, low risk, flicklift technique used by Cosmetic Surgeons to assist in tension free skin closure of large face excisional skin defects following skin cancer resection.


Facelift; Flicklift; Skin cancer; Cosmetic surgery; Reconstruction face


Klaassen MF, Frame JD, Levick P. Aesthetica in Practice: The Flick Lift in Assisting Closure of Large Cutaneous Excisional Defects on Face. Clin Surg. 2017; 2: 1684.

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