As we age, the skin around our eyelids stretches, the muscles weaken and fat pockets begin to bulge. Blepharoplasty or eyelid surgery is a procedure designed to reduce the appearance of tired, droopy eyes caused from the unfortunate effects of time and gravity by removing excess skin and fat pockets in the upper and lower eyelids. Eyelid surgery won’t reduce the appearance of crow’s feet, drooping eyebrows or dark circles under the eyes.
If you’re in good, physical health and have realistic expectations, eyelid surgery is usually performed on patients 35-years old and above (unless you’re genetically predisposed to droopy eyes). Potential patients with thyroid disease, insufficient tear production, high blood pressure, diabetes, circulatory disorders or cardiovascular disease are generally discouraged from blepharoplasty.
Eyelid surgery is usually performed under a local anaesthesia but general anaesthesia can be used. The surgeon begins by making incisions in the crease of the upper eyelid and behind or beneath the lashes of the lower eyelid. Excess fat and skin are removed and if necessary, the muscles around the eye are ‘re-draped’. Post-operative care insists on elevating the head for the first few days to reduce swelling and bruising. It’s also normal for the eyelids to feel tight and sore Stitches will then be removed anytime between two days to one week post surgery.
Risks and Complications
As with any plastic surgery, eyelid surgery carries some risk. Risks and complications associated with blepharoplasty include:
- difficulty closing eyes while sleeping (temporary but in rare cases, can be permanent)
- double or blurred vision (usually a temporary side-effect that subsides in a few days
- ectropion (a rare condition where the lower eyelids droop, post surgery), that can be corrected
- reaction to anaesthesia
- swelling at the corners of the eyelids (a temporary condition)
- white heads may appear after your stitches are removed. (Your surgeon can tend to them)
Back to work: Within ten days
More strenuous activity: 4 Weeks
Scars will fade: Scar will be hidden very close to the lower eyelash
Note: This information acts as a guide to your possible treatment. Your individual concerns and specific medical history will need to be shared and discussed with your surgeon during your initial consultation.