Send to

Choose Destination
Clin Otolaryngol. 2006 Dec;31(6):531-4.

An anatomical comparison of Blair and facelift incisions for parotid surgery.

Author information

Department of Ear Nose and Throat Surgery, Charing Cross Hospital, London, UK.



The rhytidectomy approach for parotidectomy allows the incision to be hidden, and post-operative scarring minimised. Furthermore, separate elevation of the Superficial Musculo-Aponeurotic System (SMAS) reduces the incidence of Frey's syndrome, and provides vascularized soft tissue for contour reconstruction. The technique has gained popularity particularly with plastic surgeons, but concerns persist that with this approach, particularly with lesions located anteriorly, access to the gland may be inadequate, and facial nerve identification may be compromised.


We undertook an anatomical study to quantitatively compare the surgical access achieved using the facelift approach with the conventional Blair incision, by comparing the distances between the parotid edge and the retracted flaps.


Despite reduced tissue elasticity due to formaldehyde fixation, it proved possible to demonstrate all regions of the parotid gland to the operating surgeon with either approach. There were no significant differences in the distance between the parotid edge and the retracted skin flaps (P > 0.1; paired t-test).


The facelift approach provides at least equal access to all regions of the parotid gland when compared to a Blair's incision. It is a superior approach aesthetically and its more widespread use in parotid surgery is advocated.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Wiley
Loading ...
Support Center