Eyelid surgery, formally known as blepharoplasty, common known as an eye lift, is a very common cosmetic surgery procedure. As we age, fine lines, wrinkles and crow’s feet accumulate around our eyes. Our eyelids get saggy with age and droop. In addition, dark circles and undereye bags lurk under our eyes, making us look older than we really are.
In a study recently reported by University of Tennessee, study participants spent almost half their time staring at the eye area when trying to figure out how old a person was. They also stared at the eyes to assess fatigue. The old saying is true; the eyes have it!
Cosmetic eyelid surgery is an easy way to erase the lines and the years around our eyes. Eyelid lifts can restore youthful vitality and confidence, and are ranked one of the top five plastic surgery procedures in the United States.
Who Should I Consult for an Eyelid Surgery?
Because of the complexity of the musculature around the eye and the multiple problems that can occur, eyelid surgery can differ dramatically with individual need. It is important to consult with a board certified cosmetic surgeon who has experience in eyelid surgery.
In addition, patients that suffer from dry eyes, hypothyroidism, glaucoma, diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease or Grave’s disease are not as good candidates for the surgery. The surgeon would be able to advise you on this.
It is important to choose a cosmetic surgeon that has experience in eyelid surgery, as the skin around the eye is delicate and can scar easily. In addition, the eyelid is lined with tear ducts, tear producing glands and eyelashes that all have to be carefully maneuvered around. Ask for before and after photos.
How Does Eyelid Surgery Work?
Depending on where your problem lies, the surgeon will make incisions to remove excess fat and skin. Then, the surgeon will suture the incision closed, automatically drawing the skin tighter and removing wrinkles and bags.
What Can I Expect During the Eye Lift?
Eyelid surgery typically is an outpatient surgery that is done under local anesthesia. You are sedated, but awake. The surgery can take anywhere from one to three hours depending on what you have done.
After the eye lift is finished, your eyes will be covered with a lubricant and then bandaged. Have a friend drive you home.
What Can I Expect During Recovery?
Your surgeon will most likely prescribe an oral medication to help with any pain, and also an antibiotic to prevent infection. It is important to follow your discharge instructions as infection can lead to scarring and worse, vision loss. Instructions on how to clean your eyes, how to use eye medications, no television viewing or makeup are examples of instructions you may receive.
Stitches are removed 7-10 days post-op, but bruising and swelling will still be present up to two weeks post surgery. You can get back to normal activities after stitches are removed, but heavy lifting, exercise and bending will be prohibited until 3 weeks after your surgery.