Pooja Mally Craig N. Czyz Allan E. Wulc
Aesthetic Surgery Journal, Volume 34, Issue 6, 1 August 2014, Pages 809–822
Published: 01 August 2014
With respect to the pathogenesis of periorbital and midfacial aging, gravity may play a greater role than volume loss.
The authors determined the effect of shifting from the upright to the supine position on specific attributes of facial appearance and ascertained whether facial appearance in the supine position bore any resemblance to its appearance in youth.
Participants who showed signs of midface aging were positioned in the upright and supine positions, and photographs were obtained during smiling and repose. For each photograph, examiners graded the following anatomic parameters, using a standardized scale: brow position, tear trough length and depth, steatoblepharon, cheek volume, malar bags/festoons, and nasolabial folds. Some participants provided photographs of themselves taken 10 to 15 years earlier; these were compared with the study images.
Interobserver correlation was strong. When participants were transferred from upright to supine, all anatomic parameters examined became more youthful in appearance; findings were statistically significant. The grading of anatomic parameters of the earlier photographs most closely matched that of current supine photographs of the subjects smiling.
In the supine position, as opposed to the upright position, participants with signs of midface aging appear to have much more volume in the periorbita and midface. For the subset of participants who provided photographs obtained 10 to 15 years earlier, the appearance of facial volume was similar between those images and the current supine photographs. This suggests that volume displacement due to gravitational forces plays an integral role in the morphogenesis of midface aging.