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It may take more than a facelift

ROCHESTER, N.Y., March 27 (UPI) -- It takes more than tightening loose skin via a facelift to restore a youthful look, U.S. researchers suggest.

Dr. Howard N. Langstein of the University of Rochester Medical Center suggests that the future approach to facial rejuvenation may be two-fold, first restoring structure underneath before performing skin-tightening procedures.

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Reviewing a collection of 120 facial computed tomography scans taken for other, unrelated medical reasons, plastic surgeons measured changes that occurred to facial bones over time. The computed tomography scans were divided equally by gender and age, 20 men and 20 women in each of three age groups: 20-36, 41-64 and 65 and older.

Researchers used a computer program to measure the length, width and angle of the mandible, or jaw bone, for each scan, and compare the results for each group.

The researchers found the angle of the jaw increases markedly with age, which results in a loss of definition of the lower border of the face. Jaw length decreases significantly in comparisons between the young and middle age groups, whereas the decline in jaw height from those ages 41-64 to the group age 65 and older was noteworthy.

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The findings were presented at the American Association of Plastic Surgeons annual meeting in San Antonio and published in the Journal of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery.

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