What is Eyelid Surgery (Blepharoplasty)?
Blepharoplasty can be both a functional or cosmetic surgical procedure intended to reshape the upper eyelid or lower eyelid by the removal and/or repositioning of excess tissue as well as by reinforcement of surrounding muscles and tendons. When an advanced amount of upper eyelid skin is present, the skin may hang over the eyelashes and cause loss of peripheral vision. The outer and upper parts of the visual field are most commonly affected and the condition may cause difficulty with activities such as driving or reading. In this circumstance, upper eyelid blepharoplasty is performed to improve peripheral vision. Blepharoplasty only corrects vision loss due to excess skin, muscle and fat that blocks the eye. Patients with a less severe amount of excess skin may have a similar procedure performed for cosmetic reasons.
Lower eyelid blepharoplasty is almost always done for cosmetic reasons, to improve puffy lower eyelid “bags” and reduce the wrinkling of skin. Blepharoplasty is performed through external incisions made along the natural skin lines of the eyelids, such as the creases of the upper lids and below the lashes of the lower lids, or from the inside surface of the lower eyelid.
What is to be expected after surgery?
Blepharoplasty is performed as an outpatient procedure which can be performed in the office or in an ambulatory surgery center. Local anesthetics are used and you are not put to sleep with general anesthesia. Surgery can take up to two hours with postoperative time for recovery needed as well.
After surgery initial swelling and bruising take one to two weeks to resolve but at least several months are needed until the final result becomes stable. You can resume driving and reading after a specific amount of time, usually 2-3 days. Heavy lifting and straining are not recommended for at least one week after surgery. We will decide on work restrictions after surgery.
How do I know if surgery is right for me?
Have a complete eye examination with your doctor to find out if you are a good candidate for eye lid surgery (blepharoplasty). As with any surgical procedure there are inherent risks and your results cannot be guaranteed. Your doctor will provide you with additional risks, complications and costs.