The In’s and Out’s of Eyelid Surgery
Eyelid surgery, professionally known as a blepharoplasty, addresses several areas around the eye to help reduce a tired, “heavy-lid” appearance. An eyelid procedure can include either the upper or lower eyelids or both. Complaints from candidates for this procedure include puffiness, bags under the eyes, excess skin or wrinkles of the lower eyelid. Eyelid surgery alone cannot correct crow’s feet, sagging eyebrows or dark circles under the eyes. In that case, other procedures or treatments combined with eyelid surgery is the best option.
As we age the layers of muscle above our eyes weaken, the skin loses elasticity, begins to sag and fat deposits shift to less desirable areas (creating bags under the eyes). For an upper eyelid procedure, an incision is made in the natural crease to remove excess skin. In some cases a layer of underlying muscle and fat deposits (to reduce puffiness) may also be removed.
The American Society of Plastic Surgeons website offers a very helpful 3D animation to more thoroughly explain the procedure step-by-step: https://www.plasticsurgery.org/cosmetic-procedures/eyelid-surgery
Recovery time is dependent on the extent of your procedure. Some people require only minimal skin excision to achieve a great result. Others may need more extensive procedures including fat removal or an eyelid support procedure to achieve the desired result. Here are some general guidelines so you know what to expect:
- 24 hours after your procedure you will notice redness and swelling. You will be experiencing some discomfort but that can easily be handled with pain medication we provide to you.
- Plan to be out of work for 5-7 days. During that time be sure to ice the area, keep your head elevated and avoid any exercise or strenuous activity.
- 4-6 days after the procedure I will remove the sutures. There will still be some swelling and redness, but once the sutures are removed makeup can be worn to cover those issues.
- 2 weeks after the procedure, most noticeable swelling has reduced and most patients feel “normal” again.
Eyelid surgery is a popular procedure among patients, especially combined with other less invasive treatments; Botox, chemical peels or injectable fillers. It is a relatively small procedure, with manageable recovery time.