Eyelid Surgery (Blepharoplasty)
The eyes are such an important focal point of the face, and they are usually one of the first areas to show signs of aging. Excess fat and skin can accumulate above and below the eye causing drooping or “puffy” lids, wrinkles, and bags. In some cases, the upper eyelids may sag so substantially that the patient’s field of vision is impaired. Eyelid surgery (medically referred to as blepharoplasty) is designed to rejuvenate the areas around the eye for a smoother, more revitalized appearance.
- Benefits of Eyelid Surgery
- Candidates for Eyelid Surgery
- The Eyelid Surgery Procedure
- Recovery after Eyelid Surgery
Benefits of Eyelid Surgery
The accumulation of excess fat and skin around the eyes can make people appear tired or sad, even when they feel well-rested and happy. Eyelid surgery can achieve many cosmetic benefits, including:
- Smoother skin around the eyes
- The removal of excess fat and skin
- Minimized appearance of under-eye bags or circles
- Boosted confidence
Patients who have sagging upper eyelids that interfere with their eyesight may also have their full range of vision restored.
Candidates for Eyelid Surgery
Men and women who consider eyelid surgery are typically interested in reversing signs of aging that form around the eyes, which include excess skin, skin laxity, and fat accumulation. Candidates may have cosmetic concerns regarding the upper eyelids, lower eyelids, or both. Since there are multiple surgical and non-surgical options available to improve the appearance of the orbital region, many patients choose to combine eyelid surgery with one or more additional procedures.
The appearance of the upper eyelids is often significantly influenced by the position of the brow, in which case our plastic surgeons—John M. Sarbak, MD and Amy Simon, MD—may recommend brow lift surgery. Strategic injections of BOTOX® Cosmetic can be utilized around the eyes, especially to treat wrinkles between the eyebrows and lateral to the eyes. Cosmetic dermal fillers, such as JUVÉDERM® and Restylane®, can help to fill hollowed areas where the lower eyelids meet the cheeks. For patients who wish to dramatically improve the elevation of the cheeks, a facelift may be performed. In certain situations, the skin itself can be tightened with a laser or chemical peel. During the consultation process, Dr. Sarbak or Dr. Simon will perform a physical exam, carefully review your cosmetic concerns, and recommend which procedure or procedures can best meet your needs.
The Eyelid Surgery Procedure
The treatment goals in this particular anatomic area have changed significantly over the past few years. Eyelid surgery has shifted from procedures that remove large amounts of skin and fatty tissue to procedures that try to preserve as much of the eye’s natural appearance as possible. Past techniques usually resulted in a hollow and tight appearance that sometimes looked better but not necessarily younger. Newer techniques try to maintain volume by repositioning existing tissues. The result is not only a better appearance but a more youthful look. Incisions can be hidden along the natural crease of the eyelid for upper eyelid surgery or along the lower lash line for lower eyelid surgery.
When addressing the upper eyelids surgically, several factors must be taken into consideration. These include a critical assessment of the amount of skin, evaluation of the muscles that both open and close the eyes, and analysis of the upper eyelid fat pockets. By removing excess fat and skin, your plastic surgeon can create youthful contours, tighten lax musculature, and reverse any vision impairment due to sagging eyelids.
Lower eyelid surgery can bring about some of the most significant improvements in facial aging of any procedure. Today’s techniques involve less resection of fat pockets and more repositioning of this tissue to help mask areas that have become hollow due to aging. The lower eyelid muscles also frequently require tightening and suspension to create a more harmonious blending with the cheek. Conservative skin excision in conjunction with the above techniques can provide additional skin tightening.
Recovery after Eyelid Surgery
Patients can expect mild swelling and bruising immediately after the procedure, and any postoperative discomfort can be managed with oral pain medication. Patients typically return to work or their normal daily activities after one week. At that time, the initial results of the procedure will be evident, though patients should wait until the healing process is complete and all swelling has dissipated to appreciate the final outcome of the procedure.
Contact our office today if you would like to learn more about eyelid surgery, or want to schedule a consultation with Dr. Sarbak or Dr. Simon.