Background Facial aging is a complicated process that includes volume loss and soft tissue descent. This study provides quantitative 3-dimensional (3D) data on the long-term effect of vertical vector deep-plane rhytidectomy on restoring volume to the midface. Objective To determine if primary vertical vector deep-plane rhytidectomy resulted in long-term volume change in the midface. Methods We performed a prospective study on patients undergoing primary vertical vector deep-plane rhytidectomy to quantitate 3D volume changes in the midface. Quantitative analysis of volume changes was made using the Vectra 3D imaging software (Canfield Scientific, Inc, Fairfield, New Jersey) at a minimum follow-up of 1 year. Results Forty-three patients (86 hemifaces) were analyzed. The average volume gained in each hemi-midface after vertical vector deep-plane rhytidectomy was 3.2 mL. Conclusions Vertical vector deep-plane rhytidectomy provides significant long-term augmentation of volume in the midface. These quantitative data demonstrate that some midface volume loss is related to gravitational descent of the cheek fat compartments and that vertical vector deep-plane rhytidectomy may obviate the need for other volumization procedures such as autologous fat grafting in selected cases.
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