Eyelid surgery, or blepharoplasty, is a cosmetic surgical procedure that improves the appearance of the upper eyelids, lower eyelids, or both, by removing excess skin and fatty deposits above and below the eye. It corrects sagging, puffy, or drooping eyelids, and gets rid of bags and bulges around the eye which make the face look tired. The procedure does restore firmness to the eye area, making the face look more rested and youthful.
• Do not take aspirin or anti-inflammatory medications
• If you smoke, quit smoking for at least 2 weeks pre-op
• Arrange for someone to care for you the first 24-72 hours after surgery
• Prepare Icepacks to reduce post-op swelling
• Moisturizers, scar reducing/minimizing creams and petroleum jelly for incisions
• Eye drops
• Morning of surgery, wash face thoroughly and do not apply any products
• Bring sunglasses to wear on the way home from surgery
• Follow your physician’s directions carefully regarding medications, eating and drinking
During the operation, the surgeon makes incisions above and below the eye tissue. These incisions follow the natural folds of the eye and allow the surgeon to separate the underlying fatty tissue and muscle. The surgeon then removes the fat and excises the sagging skin and muscle.
Upper Eyelid Blepharoplasty:
Incisions are made in the natural skin crease of the upper eyelid. Excess skin and fatty tissue is removed and the muscles and orbital septum may be tightened to correct droopy eyelids. The incisions are closed.
Lower Eyelid Blepharoplasty:
Lower eyelid surgery removes fat deposits and tightens loose skin. Incisions are made along the lower lash line and extends a little beyond the eye. Excess fat, muscle and skin are excised and the incision is closed.
If you have fat pockets below your eyes, and do not have loose skin, your surgeon may recommend a transconjunctival blepharoplasty.
Transconjunctival blepharoplasty does not tighten the skin, it simply removes excess fat. The incision is made inside your lower eyelid, leaving no visible scar. Excess fat and muscle are removed and the incision is closed.
Pain level: Mild discomfort. 0-3 days of pain medication(may not require medication)
Swelling and bruising: Skin removal only: 3-5 days
Skin and fat removal: 1-2 weeks
Work: Return after 5 days with make-up
After 2-3 weeks without make-up
Exercise: Wait 2-3 weeks
Final result: Seen after 1-2 months
*Eye make-up can be work after 7 days.
For faster recovery:
• Sleep with your head elevated for the first few days after surgery to minimize swelling
• Place ice compresses on your eyes for 1-3 days
• Wear sunglasses to protect your eyes from wind and sun irritation
• Don’t drink alcohol (can cause fluid retention and delay recovery)
Complications of eyelid surgery, while rare, can cause prolonged healing, change in or loss of vision, unpleasant-appearing and painful scars, the inconvenience and cost of further surgery, and the possibility of requiring eye drops or ointment, temporarily or permanently.
• Blurred vision: This is a temporary condition that occurs in less than 1% of surgeries
• Corneal abrasion: This condition is temporary and is easily treated by patching the eye for 1-3 days
• Double vision: This condition is temporary and occurs in less than 1% of surgeries
• Difficulties closing eyes: This condition is usually temporary in rare cases. In rare cases, corrective surgery is required.
• Dry eye syndrome
During blepharoplasty, incisions are made within the natural creases of the eyelids or on the inside of the eyelids. The surgeon removes some of the herniated fat and excess skin and then closes the incision with very fine sutures.
As with any surgical procedure, some scarring is to be expected. However, scarring with blepharoplasty is minimal and practically nonexistent after several months of healing.
Fat and loose skin around the eyes usually appears with age, but some young people are genetically prone to it, so there really is no set age when blepharoplasty is performed.
A blepharoplasty is not designed to remove the wrinkles at the outer corners of your eyes or to fix sagging brows. There are other procedures available that can be used to remove wrinkles near the eyes, including laser resurfacing and Botox.
After your surgery, your eyes will be tender, swollen, and sore, and you will probably have some bruising. These should all resolve in a few days. Discomfort can usually be controlled with pain medications prescribed by your surgeon. You may experience blurry vision for the first few days after your procedure, and your eyes may be watery or very dry.
Stitches are normally removed three to five days after your surgery.
You should be able to see a definite difference once the swelling goes down, but this won’t be before several days.