What is eyelid surgery or blepharoplasty ?

A blepharoplasty involves removal of extra skin and muscle from the upper or lower eyelids.  Usually a small amount of fat is also removed in this procedure.  This fat removal improves the appearance of bags under the eyes.  On occasion a eyelid tightening procedure will performed in conjunction with the procedure.

Who would benefit from upper blepharoplasty ?

Many patients present with complaints of heavy eyes or always looking tired.  Most of these patients simply have excessive skin, and sometimes muscle, in their upper eyelids. This skin and muscle gradually descends with age.  It can weigh down the lid and add years to one’s appearance.  Excising this skin and muscle can reverse this tired look and dramatically improve one’s appearance.

Who would benefit from lower blepharoplasty ?shutterstock_186318194

Many patients also complain of loose skin and bagginess in their lower eyelids.  This bagginess is a result of fat from the lower eyelid gradually herniating as its retaining structures weaken.  To accentuate this orbital fat herniation, the fat from the cheek also descends, this creates a depression at the orbital rim called a “tear trough” deformity.  Lower lid blepharoplasty improves the skin redundancy by direct excision.  The surgery then improves the bagginess by excising or relocating the lower lid fat over the orbital rim, thus correcting the tear trough.

Will insurance pay for surgery ?Bleph2

On some occasions, upper lid blepharoplasty will be covered by insurance plans.  This will  only be covered if there is documented visual obstruction that is confirmed by testing performed by an optometrist.

Where is blepharoplasty performed ?

Upper eyelid surgery can be performed as an in office procedure, which results in significant cost savings.  Lower lid surgery is more complex and would require surgery in the hospital.

What are some of the risks of blepharoplasty ?Bleph1

Please refer to the following form published by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons(ASPS)
Blepharoplasty-ASPS

What is the typical postoperative course after blepharoplasty?

Day 1
• Keep dressings clean and dry
• Sleep on at least 2 pillows for 1-2 weeks after surgery to improve swelling
• May ice-20 minutes on/20 minutes off
• No heavy lifting or straining

Day 2-7
• You may now shower.  Tape will be in place over your incision.  This tape is to remain in place until removed by your surgeon
• No heavy lifting or straining

Day 7 to 1 month
• You may slowly resume normal activities
• No straining or heavy lifting
• You may discontinue sleeping on 2 pillows
• You may now wear make up

1 month+
• No restrictions as you gradually recover

Driving?

You may drive when you are off narcotics and feel confident to control the car, even in an emergency.  Most patients are able to drive within 1 week.

Time off of Work? Restrictions?

This is dependant on the type of work you perform.  Many patients will require only a few days to a week.