As we age, we accumulate excessive skin in the eye area because our skin loses elasticity. Genetic predisposition or body chemistry can cause premature aging in younger people as well, causing eyelids to appear puffy, droopy or wrinkled. Eyelid surgery can restore a youthful, healthy and refreshed appearance to your eyes.
In some people, “drooping” eyelids can not only create an aging look but can also create a vision problem. Upper eyelid revision and lower eyelid revision, both known as blepharoplasty, reduces the drooping eyelid tissue, improving the appearance of the eyelid, and producing a rejuvenated and more alert appearance. Blepharoplasty can treat and correct many conditions:
- Loose, sagging skin that creates folds above the eye
- Excess skin that disturbs the natural contour of the eye and impairs vision
- Fatty deposits that make the upper eyelid appear puffy
- Bags under the eyes
- Excess skin and fine wrinkles in the lower eyelid
- Drooping of the lower eyelid, showing the white under the iris (colored part of the eye)
Before the Surgery
Your surgeon will review all your medications and advise you about any changes that need to be made before the surgery. On the day of the surgery, your doctor will inject a numbing medication into your eyelid and administer a sedative to help you relax.
During the Surgery
In upper eyelid surgery, your surgeon will mark the lines and creases of the eyelids to prevent scarring. The surgeon will make an incision along the natural fold of the upper eyelid and then will remove excess skin, some muscles and fat beneath the skin. The incision is closed with tiny stitches that will leave a fairly invisible scar.
In lower eyelid surgery, your surgeon will make an incision along the lower lash line and smile creases of the lower eyelid to reduce scarring. Skin, fat and muscle are trimmed away and the incision is closed with sutures.
Blepheroplasty lasts anywhere from 1 to 2 hours. After the procedure, you will be monitored in a recovery room for a short time before being released. Your surgeon may apply small, sterile bandages. It is not necessary to keep your eye or eyes covered, but you may use an ice pack to prevent swelling and promote comfort. It is normal to have some swelling and bruising, but this should go away after a few days. You may also receive an ointment to prevent dry eye.
After the Surgery
For about a week, you must clean the eye area and you may be given eye drops to lubricate the eyes. You will most likely be given a list of activities and situations to avoid in the weeks following surgery. This list of do’s and don’ts may include:
- No makeup
- No contact lenses
- No lifting, bending or exercising for 10 days following procedure
- Required use of sunglasses and sun block
- Keeping head elevated
How to prepare
Patients will undergo a medical evaluation and be asked to quit smoking well in advance. Patients will also need to avoid aspirin and anti-inflammatory drugs prior to the procedure. A ride home and care for 24 hours should be arranged beforehand.