LEARN, SHOP & CHAT ABOUT PLASTIC SURGERY, BEAUTY AND ANTI-AGING
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I will be 52 in July. I had a facelift, upper and lower eyes, classic brow lift, small chin implant with Dr. Lev in Costa Rica on March 7th, 2012. I stayed at CheTica Ranch. I highly recommend both Dr. Lev and CheTica if you go to Costa Rica for surgery.

Tags:

facelift, face lift, browlift, brow lift, chin implant, upper eyes, lower eyes
Comments (21)
JustLookinFrom: JustLookin | 2013-08-03 18:01:22

Thanks for all of the nice comments. I just added a photo at about a year and a half after my facelift.
pamelakdFrom: pamelakd | 2013-06-10 20:28:02

Hi there. I have surgery scheduled later this year in Costa Rica with Dr. Lev and I'm just wondering how you have progressed since your early days and these informative posts. Would be great to see a recent photo if you are able to share. Hope you continued to be as pleased with the outcome. You really look great.
ezoffice1From: ezoffice1 | 2013-02-16 07:02:22

You look totally awesome. Wonderful results. I'm going for a mini facelift, fat transfer to cheeks and back lipo 3/11.. results like this make me all the more excited. I did my eyes about 2 years ago. Thank you for sharing this is so helpful specially the day by day view
nikkixoFrom: nikkixo | 2012-12-04 15:19:28

You look wonderful. I just had my work done by the fabulous Dr. Lev also and thrilled with his work and his great personality. I too stayed at Che Tica, but felt it could use improvement. I do have to say that I was shocked when I did see other patients here who had "facelifts" and other facial procedures looking like they did when they first went in? I couldn't say anything to them, but thought OMG didn't you look at before and after picture of your surgeon? I know that's something I want to see and that's how I ended up choosing Dr. Lev thank God.

I can be reached at ironmaiden2565@yahoo.com
Facelift2From: Facelift2 | 2012-11-03 14:22:14

I'm considering a face-lift in Costa Rico and appreciate all your information. Several years ago, I went through chemo for breast cancer and the chemo has caused my hair to be thinner than most woman, also it is very light blond, so where the incisions are placed is very important. From your photographs, I see the incisions around the ear. Did you have incisions around your hairline around your temples ( front of face) or did the surgeon do vertical incision about one inch inside the hairline along the temple area. Thanks much.
JustLookinFrom: JustLookin | 2012-06-14 20:17:46

Thanks FP. Before I went, everyone of his former patients that I had contacted told me to trust whatever he suggested for me. I was not excited about a chin implant because I have read that the satisfaction rate is not that great. I even asked Dr. Lev about it, and he said that people are often unhappy when other doctors do chin implants because they don't bother to use sizers during surgery to make sure everything is in proportion before choosing an implant. He used a very small implant for me, and I have to say, I LOVE it. Even my husband, who was not crazy about me getting an implant, has commented several times about what a huge difference it made in my facial shape. He loves my new look. I'm SO GLAD that I decided to trust Dr. Lev and go ahead with the implant.
friedparselyFrom: friedparsely | 2012-06-14 15:24:30

Hi, Just Lookin, I love your new chin. When I met with Dr Lev in 2007 he thought I needed an chin implant, but was too polite to push it. I elected not to have one, and now wish I did. Having more chin holds everything up longer! Maybe next time.
JustLookinFrom: JustLookin | 2012-06-11 00:00:59

Hi Linda. You can call Dr. Lev's office, or, email him directly if you can't get through to Didi. His email is listed on her site, too. He should get back with you in a few days or less after you send photos, and if he does not, resend them. I think a lot of email disappears in Costa Rica somehow. I think it's true that he does a great many Costa Rican patients, because I saw several of them coming into his office paying, and some waiting for followup visits. He's not really a "tourism doc". Still, he can probably fit you in for July. Just keep calling or emailing until you know they have heard from you, and he'll give you a date and an estimate of what he thinks you need done after he gets you photos. I'm doing great. I just added some three months photos. I had a tummy tuck in the U.S. on Thursday, and all of the medical people asked for Dr. Lev's contact info after seeing his work. These are the same people who work with the best U.S. docs in my area, lol. They said they can always tell when someone has a facelift, but with me, they can't tell. After I showed them my before photos, they were REALLY amazed! I'm still thrilled with his work, and will go back to him if and when I ever need any other facial work done. The TT was cheaper in the U.S., and easier to work around my current schedule, so I had it done here. Good luck to you, and keep me posted on how things go. You won't ever regret using Dr. Lev.
JosephmichaelFrom: Josephmichael | 2012-06-04 16:34:47

Hi linda,
I just emailed Didi. The clinic you mentioned was the one called Santa Lucia Clinic? How is the clinic different from the hospital in terms of medical care? I tried to send Didi my pictures from my IPad , but when I tried to send them something popped up that said eternallyvain.com is not a registered website. but I had just been on it prior to emailing Didi. Do you know what I may have done wrong? I hope they have some early august dates available, because I was hoping to work for July and then maybe go in august, but after reading the site it said they don't have that many dates available for u.s. Citizens each month because he has so many Costa Rican patients to see. If not I guess I will just try for July and not work this summer. Thank you so much for all the great information you have given me! How are you feeling now? Has any of the numbness gone away? - Linda :)
JosephmichaelFrom: Josephmichael | 2012-05-29 17:37:53

Hi Lynn, thanks for all of the great detailed information you gave. I am going to start looking into having it done. All of the info will help make my decisions much easier. You look absolutely beautiful. I'm glad to know it wasn't that painful for you either. That's really important that you had a good experience- as good as it could be.thanks again! Linda (:
JustLookinFrom: JustLookin | 2012-05-17 20:02:05

Lagitane, I did not even realize that I had drains in my head until my first followup visit on the third day post-op. He took the head bandage off, and said he was going to remove the drains. I think they were just little plastic things that were imbedded in the skin, and he pulled or popped them out. I did not feel a thing, though. I'm very serious when I say that I had NO pain at all other than a sore throat from six hours of general surgery. Basically, I was driven to CIMA hospital by the owner of ChiTica Ranch (Ruben). He took me to the check in area. I checked in, paying 2000.00 down payment. They put my Passport and credit card in a safe at the front desk. Someone came down and got me, and from there, it was just like surgery at a U.S. hospital. They took vitals and some history and all, the anesthesiologist that works with Dr. Lev, Dr. Greenwood, came in and talked with me and got my IV's going. Dr. Lev then came in and talked to me. A few minutes later, a nurse came in and gave me as shot, saying "This is part of your anesthesia". I don't remember much after that. As far as the anesthesia, it was some kind of shot that allows you to communicate, but you don't remember it. It's meant to relax people, I guess. I think Didi calls it Dormicum, but not sure. I do remember Dr. Lev waking me up for a minute and telling me that he wanted to show me my results before the swelling started (before he bandaged me), and he held a mirror up for me to see his wonderful results. I guess I went right back to sleep after that. I woke up in my room to Didi giving me a foot massage and playing relaxing music. I could not really see anything other than blurry shadows. Not sure if it's because of my eyes being swollen, or because of the protective stuff they put in your eyes during surgery, but I could not see well until the next morning. Not a problem, because I was very sleepy. The BEST money I spent was the 150.00 for a private nurse, because she stayed up all night feeding me ice chips and doing her best to help me any way she could. My throat was VERY sore from six hours of General surgery (tubes), and she gave me some "candy", as she called it, to help numb my throat. She was wonderful. I felt very safe and cared for. She left about six in the morning (I think), and the regular hospital nurses took over. Ruben's wife called about nine in the morning, and she said that she was trying to get me check out and had sent a driver to come get me. The nurses said that I had to shower and sit up a while first, so they came in and sat me up. I tried to drink some soda, and got dry heaves (the first time I had felt any nausea). It was just from sitting up so fast and trying to drink, I guess. I got a shower and got dressed. They took me to a desk (by wheelchair), where they told me how much my balance was, and gave me back my passport and credit card so I could pay the balance. The amount depends on how long your surgery actually takes, but it's pretty close to Didi's estimate on her site. Some people pay less, some pay a little more. After I paid, they took me to a door to wait for my driver. He picked me up and took me to my private cottage at CheTica Ranch. The ride was a little bit miserable because I was still a little nauseous, but once I was settled into the recliner in the cottage, I was WONDERFUL, and thankful that I did not have to go anywhere until Monday (I got to the cottage on Friday after a Thursday surgery). By Monday, I was in great shape for the ride back to town. Dr. Lev removed my "cast" from my head, and he removed my drains and eyelid stitches. A couple of days later, he started removing the other stitches. I can't remember how many post-op visits I had, but I think it was four. Don't worry about the drains, for sure. I had no clue that I even had drains until he was ready to take them out, and did not feel a thing as he took them out. It was a great experience for me. I was SO afraid that it was going to be some "rustic" hospital in a third-world country type of experience, but it was really pretty much just like being in the U.S., except that it was more relaxing since I was at the ranch with people bringing my food and driving me where I needed to go. The hospital was very modern. The nurses spoke sort of "broken English", but on the one occasion that we thought we were not understanding each other well enough, she went and got someone (another nurse) who spoke perfect English to translate.
lagitaneFrom: lagitane | 2012-05-12 05:39:07

Fantastic job, the neck job looks awesome! You look great. Can you elaborate on the aftercare? What did the drains entail? I would also like to know about anesthesia and your thoughts on that. I like the fact that he has you stay with other patients and that he does only one surgery per day. Best regards, and thanks for sharing.
JustLookinFrom: JustLookin | 2012-05-09 12:31:48

Hi Friedparsely! Yes, we ARE lucky to have been patients of Dr. Lev. He's amazing. Glad to hear that your results are lasting well. At two months, I'm still waking up to small changes every day, and loving it. I can't even express how happy I am with the work that he did for me. He also removed some old, saline implants for me when he did my facelift. He's the best!
friedparselyFrom: friedparsely | 2012-05-08 12:36:40

Dr Lev did my face, neck and eyes in 2007 and his work really lasts well! He also removed a basal cell carcinoma on my face and sent it for biopsy. My GP in the US had ignored it. We're so lucky we found him!
JustLookinFrom: JustLookin | 2012-05-05 01:14:14

Hi Linda. I decided on Dr. Lev after seeking out patients who used him on the Internet (not the same patients that are on his coordinators site, because I wanted to do some research independently). I was able to find four people who had used him recently, and they were all happy with their results. I have not been able to find a bad word about him. After meeting him, I understood why. He really is an amazing person, as well as being a skilled surgeon. If you do have a problem, he won't leave you hanging and will do what he can to fix the problem. I was at the Ranch with several other patients of his, and none of us had complaints. We were all happy. He likes you to stay 15 days, but I stayed 14. You really need to stay at least 14 days, because he removes the stitches in stages, and I was pushing it at 14 days. I don't think that anyone who has had a really good facelift with lots of muscle work is healed for at least six months to a year, but at two week, you look pretty good. You would still have a few light bruises and some mild swelling that is probably only noticeable to you. At three week, most or all of the bruising is gone. You'd look fine for work, though. When I say that the healing continues for up to a year, I mean that your face and the top of your head will be numb for a while, and the nerves eventually regenerate. I'm still numb in areas at almost two months out, but it gets better by the day. Your results also get better and more natural by the day. As the mild swelling relaxes, your face looks more and more youthful and natural. It's SO much fun watching the changes. You should take some photos of yourself and send them to Didi or Dr. Lev (or both) at eternallyvain dot com, and Dr. Lev will email you back with what he thinks you need to have done. His price list is on the website that I just listed. I did not have any hidden charges. He will give you a five percent discount on his fees for paying cash. If I had it to do over again, I'd do the clinic option and save the extra money. CIMA Hospital is 1500-1800 more than the clinic. When Dr. Lev sees you in person, he may suggest something in addition to what he saw in your photos, or he may decided that you don't need something that he thought you needed. For instance, once he saw me, he said that I needed a small chin implant, so I paid extra for that. Another lady was supposed to get a brow lift, and he decided that she did not need one when he saw her at her consult the night before her surgery. CheTica Ranch is a nice place to stay. It's 85.00 per night, but that includes all transportation to and from Dr. Lev's, the hospital or clinic, and the airport. It also includes all of your meals. You have your own private cottage. Really nice people own the place, and there are other people there who will be recovering. It's fun to get to know them. His clinic option for a full facelift including upper and lower eyes and a classic brow lift and face and neck is 6500.00 and you get five percent off. The Ranch was about 1300.00. You have to get there by plane, which is like 500-700. I used frequent flyer miles, so I did not have to pay for my plane ticket. I would have gone to Dr. Lev, even if I could have done it for the same price in the U.S. because he's an expert at getting a really nice, tight neckline. My neck was my worst problem, and I knew that he could fix it. Let me know if I can answer any more questions. Oh, most everyone considers Dr. Lev to be one of the best, if not the best, facial surgeon in Costa Rica. I saw the work of other doctors on patients that were at the ranch, and there was no doubt that Dr. Lev's work was the best. Good luck with your decision!
JosephmichaelFrom: Josephmichael | 2012-05-03 17:45:29

Your results are amazing. I was looking into dr.s in costa rica and became a little discouraged after reading some posts about all the not so great docs out there. Just like anywhere else. I really want to get a facelift and my eyes done as well. If you don't mind me asking, were you completely healed at 3 weeks? Able to go back to work healed? How soon did you leave costa rica? And would you mind me asking approximately how much you think my procedure may cost? Sorry. I know it's a lot of questions, but you looked great before, now you look amazing. Definitely not your age. If I can afford it I would definitely use your dr. Thanks. Linda
JustLookinFrom: JustLookin | 2012-04-30 13:55:25

Thanks Gay2. There was a lady staying with us who cancelled with her surgeon, lost her 1400 deposit, and paid for an extra week at the recovery ranch after seeing all of Dr. Lev's patients. His work speaks for itself. He's amazing. I'll have to look at your profile and see who you used...
gay2From: gay2 | 2012-04-29 23:42:58

You look stunning....wish i had gone to him.
JustLookinFrom: JustLookin | 2012-04-28 16:00:37

Thanks, Pegsue50! It gets better and better as the days go by, so you are in for a treat as your healing continues. Did you post any photos? I'd love to see your results, but understand that you are still very early out, so I'll keep an eye out for pics being posted soon.
pegsue50From: pegsue50 | 2012-04-27 10:57:07

your results are beautiful, your surgeon did an excellent job! I am 8 days out, and I could not be more pleased with my results too, good luck to you, you look wonderful!
pegsue50From: pegsue50 | 2012-04-27 10:55:00

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Member Details

JustLookin
Username: JustLookin
First Name: Lynn
Location: AL, United States
Gender: F
Age: 56
Height: 5'10"
Ethnicity: Caucasian

Procedure Details

Date of Procedure: 03-07-2012
Results: 5 (Thrilled)
Weight: 168 lbs
Doctor Name: Dr. Lev My Profile
City of Procedure: San Jose
Sate of Procedure: *
Country: Costa Rica


Chin/Jaw Implants, Augmentation:

Eyelid Surgery, Blepharoplasty:
Eyelid Surgery Type: Transconjunctival (incision inside eyelid)
Lids Treated: Both Upper And Lower Lids

Face Lift:
Face Lift Type: Deep Plane Face Lift

Forehead Lift, Brow Lift:
Brow/Forehead Lift Type: Full Coronal

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