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UCLA Head and Neck Surgery


Division of Facial Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery

Facial Surgery at UCLA

Overview - UCLA Facial Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery

The UCLA Facial Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery Division is one of the nation's leading programs in aesthetic and reconstructive surgery. We focus solely on the face and neck. Our passion is to improve a patient's quality of life by rejuvenating their face from an aesthetic and functional standpoint. To be able to turn back the clock and allow a patient to look more youthful, energized and happy without the obvious signs of surgery is the goal. Happiness is critical to our well-being and delivering happiness is what we strive for each and every day for our patients. From skin care and minimally involved procedures to the most complex surgeries on the face, our goal is to be your face expert.

Facial Plastic Surgery Faculty
Our aesthetic facial plastic surgery faculty are board certified by the American Board of Facial Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery in order to assure the highest level of expertise in surgical procedures of the face and neck. They have pioneered many of the surgical procedures used today in facial aesthetic surgery and have combined experiences totaling tens of thousands of patients over 50 plus years of practice.

Reconstructive Expertise
Our reconstructive expertise leads the nation with an unsurpassed 99.5% success rate of microvascular (free flap) surgeries in nearly 2000 cases encompassing over 20 years at UCLA. As face experts, we are now embarking upon performing the first total face transplant surgery on the West Coast and we look forward to leading this exciting period for UCLA.

As a division of the UCLA Head and Neck Surgery Department, success is part of everything we do. Our department is recognized as the #1 program in Los Angeles, #1 in California, and #4 in the nation.

Facial Plastic Surgery Academy Facial Plastic Surgeon Board Certified

Contact Us:

To schedule a consultation or to learn more about clinical services provided, please call the following:

  • Aesthetic/Cosmetic Consultations: (310) 794-0239
  • Reconstructive Consultation: (310) 206-6688

Expert Team:

Program Services - UCLA Facial Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery


Rhinoplasty is typically performed to improve the appearance of a nose that is excessively large or small, crooked or otherwise out of harmony with the rest of the face. Done correctly, the procedure can improve the patient's appearance and self-confidence. The best results occur when the nose looks entirely natural and does not appear to have been refined via a surgical procedure.

Before rhinoplasty   After rhinoplasty
Before   After

Rhinoplasty is performed to reshape the nose for both aesthetic and corrective purposes. Aesthetic goals may include reducing or increasing the size of the nose, reshaping the bridge and tip, narrowing the span of the nostrils, or changing the angle between the nose and upper lip. Corrective goals may include improving breathing function or repairing a birth defect or injury.

Rhinoplasty Procedure
While there is little risk for the patient, rhinoplasty demands a high degree of surgical skill, as it involves changing the delicate bone and cartilage framework of the nose.

The procedure usually takes about two hours, though complicated cases may take longer. During surgery, the skin of the nose is separated from its framework of bone and cartilage. This enables the surgeon to sculpt the underlying structure and remove any irregularities. Once the sculpting is complete, the skin is re-draped to the bone and cartilage. In some cases, tissue may also be added to enhance certain features. The soft touch rhinoplasty technique that Dr. Rawnsley helped develop respects the structural integrity of the nose and reduces trauma to the underlying bone and cartilage structure. The result is a more natural appearance, with less likelihood of long-term complications.

The "Perfect Nose"
While there is no one perfect nose, there is an ideal nose for each individual.  This ideal is dictated by face shape, ethnicity, age and other factors.  The "perfect nose" creates a balance among the attributes of the face. 

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Before facelift   After facelift
Before   After

The goal of facelift surgery is to achieve a natural, rejuvenated appearance by removing excess fatty tissue, tightening underlying structures, and smoothing facial skin. The facelift procedure can tighten sagging facial muscles and loose skin on the neck, as well as remove excess fat.

Several different kinds of facelift procedures are available and after a thorough evaluation, Dr. Rawnsley will advise you on the merits of each procedure and help you make an informed decision about which is best given your unique goals, expectations, age and lifestyle.

Facelift Procedure
During face lift surgery, the surgeon begins by making a cosmetic incision around the ear to separate the facial skin from the underlying tissue. Excess fat and skin are removed, and the underlying structures are repositioned and tightened. The facial skin is then carefully re-draped and secured using small sutures.

The procedure is usually completed on an outpatient basis, though overnight accommodations are available. Surgical time and recovery vary depending on the patient and procedure.

Non-surgical "Facelift"
For some specific facial areas and problems, there are non-surgical "facelift" options that can achieve effective results. These include injectables, like Botox and facial fillers, like Restylane and Juvederm.

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Blepharoplasty (Eyelid surgery)

Blepharoplasty rejuvenates the appearance of the eyes by removing and repositioning fat around the eyes and addressing drooping skin of the upper eyelids, minimizing bags under the eyes and tightening the lower eyelid skin.

Before blepharoplasty (eyelid surgery)   After blepharoplasty (eyelid surgery)
Before   After

When done properly, eyelid surgery creates a more rested, alert and youthful appearance. While either procedure can be done alone, upper and lower eyelid procedures are usually performed together.

Blepharoplasty Procedure
Upper eyelid surgery involves making a thin incision on the upper lid's natural skin fold, and removing excess skin and fat. Lower eyelid surgery is often performed without a visible incision through the inside of the eyelid, removing protruding fat tissue directly from the inside surface of the lower eyelid.

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The brow and forehead areas are often the first to show signs of aging. Sun, wind and gravity cause the skin to lose its elasticity, leading to wrinkling and a perceived heaviness in this region of the face. A forehead or brow lift is one option for minimizing the effects of these changes on your appearance.

A facial plastic surgeon performs this procedure by tightening the skin in the forehead region, thus reducing the amount of wrinkling in the area and minimizing the appearance of "drooping brows." In some cases, the surgeon may remove a portion of the muscle that causes these vertical wrinkles. The goal of surgery is a smoother, more youthful appearance.

Because of advances in medical technology, endoscopic techniques are now available. These new techniques greatly reduce the length and number of incision as well as scar visibility. Using the technique, the surgeon makes a series of incision immediately behind the hairline. The endoscope is then utilized to remove the muscles that create the wrinkles in this region. The surgeon then lifts the eyebrows to reduce their sagging appearance.

Hair Transplant Surgery

Before hair transplant (hair surgery)   After hair transplant (hair surgery)
Before   After

The new concepts in hair transplantation take genetically stable hairs from the back or sides of the head and meticulously redistribute them into receptor sites utilizing only micrografts (grafts with one, two, or three hairs at a time) simulating the way hair naturally grows. At our surgical center, we believe that the transplantation of hair is more than a surgery, it is an art. In essence, the physician is painting a new, individually crafted hairline that appears natural. We also use a feathering technique by placing the fine, single hair grafts at the front of the hairline and then place two or three hair grafts more towards the back of the hairline to add density and fullness. This feathering technique artfully softens the hairline, giving it the natural microvariations that make it virtually impossible to detect. We also take precautions to monitor depth control by expanding limited anesthetized areas, which allow for a more dense appearance.

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Minimally Invasive Treatments

Neuromodulators (e.g. Botox)
Botox is a dilute, purified form of botulinum toxin, which is an extremely effective muscle relaxant. Although Botox is a toxin, it has been shown to have no serious side effects. When Botox is injected into the superficial muscles of the face, it relaxes these muscles and prevents the wrinkle lines caused by squinting, frowning, and raising the eyebrows. Botox is ideal for improving and smoothing the skin between the eyebrows, the lines of the forehead, and the crow's feet area around the eyes. It not only immediately improves dynamic facial lines, it also actually prevents those line from becoming permanently fixed in the skin, and so truly prevents the appearance of facial aging.

Fillers (e.g. Juvederm, Voluma)
Fillers, such as Juvederm or Voluma are an injectable gel made of a smooth hyaluronic acid. It is made through a ground-breaking new process called, "Hylacross technology" which means that the gel structure is FDA approved to last up to 1 year with just one treatment. Over time the body loses hyaluronic acid and reduces its production which consequently results with wrinkles and folds in the face. An example of this would be the smile lines around your mouth. Juvederm is used to fill in these wrinkles and folds with this naturally occurring substance for a safe treatment and youthful appearance. You may also use the product to enhance a feature such as your lips. For temples and cheek areas that need elevation, Voluma, can be used to enhance and counteract some of the age-related changes that occur with gravity over time.

Chemical Peels
A chemical peel is a minimally invasive technique used to improve and smooth the texture of the facial skin. The peels work by removing the outermost layers of the skin. Different peels are used and tailored to a patient's needs. They newly regenerated skin is usually smoother and less wrinkled than the old skin.

Radiofrequency and Ultrasound
Radiofrequency treatments emit energy into the skin that heats the tissue to trigger collagen remodelifng for the treatment of wrinkles.

Ultrasound treatments create a micro-injury deep beneath the skin, leaving the surface intact. This stimulates collagenesis and collagen remodeling for the treatment of wrinkles. The result is lifting and tightening that lasts for one year or more after just one treatment.

Micro-needling is an innovation in facial plastic surgery for the treatment of the appearance of fine lines, acne scars and the skin's texture, tone and color. A hand-held device is used gently across your skin creating superficial micro-injuries designed to ultimately improve your skin condition upon re-epithelialization. The skin's repair process results in improvement of the appearance of softer wrinkles.

Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) for Aging Skin and for Hair Loss
As part of the body's heling ability, platelets are well known to release numerous growth factors that respond to tissue injury, initiate and promote the conditions for healing, and collagen production needed to combat age-related changes in our face and neck. Platelet-rich plasma, or PRP, is a concentrated portion of our blood that contains mostly platelets and these associated growth factors. Using a patient's own blood from a simple blood draw, we use the most advanced technology available to capture the PRP and then use it as an injection similar to fillers for facial rejuvenation.

Most recently, hair loss, especially in women, can be successfully treated by this minimally invasive approach of PRP injections to the scalp. The PRP re-activates hair follicles creating new and thicker hair growth.

Kybella (non-invasive dissolving of neck fat)
KYBELLA® is a prescription medicine that is the only FDA approved injectable treatment used in adults which dissolves the fat under the chin and improves the profile of the neck.

Mohs skin cancer reconstruction
Working alongside our Dermatologic Mohs Surgeons at UCLA we provide same day reconstruction for any skin cancer related defect of the face and neck. Our goal, as face experts, is to make sure that any skin cancer related defect is reconstructed with the aesthetic and cosmetic principles needed to achieve form, beauty and function.

Contact Us
To schedule a consultation or to learn more about clinical services provided, please call the following:

Aesthetic/Cosmetic Consultations: (310) 794-0239
UCLA Facial Plastic Surgery Clinic
924 Westwood Blvd., Suite 515
Los Angeles, CA 90024

Reconstructive Consultations: (310) 206-6688
UCLA Head and Neck Surgery Clinic
200 Medical Plaza, Suite 550
Los Angeles, Ca 90095

Faculty Specific Contacts:

  • Dr. Blackwell: (310) 206-6688 (option 1, option 7)
  • Dr. Keller: (805) 687-6408
  • Dr. Rawnsley: (310) 570-0244
  • Dr. Nabili: (310) 794-0239
  • Dr. Luu: (310) 206-6688 (Option 1, Option 4)

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