Upper and Lower Blepharoplasty
What is Blepharoplasty?
Blepharoplasty or eyelid rejuvenation is a surgical procedure used to treat sagging upper eyelids or baggy lower eyelids. Extra skin is removed and extra fat may be repositioned to areas around the eye with hollowing.
As we age, the very thin skin around our eyes begins to stretch and sag and often is the first area of the body to show aging. Sometimes, even peripheral vision can be affected by drooping upper lids, which can interfere with daily activities like driving. Sometimes, eyelid surgery is necessary because the muscles and skin that supports the eyelids weakens. Other times eyelid rejuvenation surgery is cosmetic because we want to improve our appearance.
Who is the best candidate for Eyelid Surgery?
The best patient for blepharoplasty is one who is in good overall health, healthy skin and muscle, non-smokers, and those who do not have any serious eye health conditions.
Dr. Pfeiffer performs blepharoplasty in an outpatient surgery facility under local sedation. Depending on whether the patient chooses to have both upper and lower blepharoplasty, the patient may be in the surgery facility between 1 and 3 hours.
For upper lid surgery, the incision is usually hidden in the natural crease. Skin is removed, muscle is preserves, and fat may be repositioned or removed.
Functional Eyelid Surgery
Blepharoplasty may be covered by health insurance if it is determined to be medically necessary. This is usually the case when daily activities are affected due to vision loss from hanging or sagging upper eyelids, Special diagnostic testing is used by Dr. Pfeiffer to identify and measure any loss of peripheral vision.
Cosmetic Eyelid Surgery
Eyelid surgery can also be performed on the upper and lower lids because the patient wants to have a more rested and younger appearance. Extra skin is removed tightening the upper lid. In cases where the skin has weakened and extra fat protrudes in the lower eyelid, Dr. Pfeiffer can make a positive difference. She will move the fat and stem cells to areas around the eye that have lost volume in order to smooth the juncture between the eyelid and the cheek. The incision in lower eyelid surgery is usually hidden by being placed on the inside of the lid. CO2 laser skin resurfacing may be performed additionally to tighten any loose skin in the lower eyelid.
As with any surgery, it is important to be realistic with your expectations. Our goal is to turn back time, not make you look different.
Recovery after Blepharoplasty
You will leave with sutures and you will be asked to use an ointment on the suture line. The surgery staff will give you specific post-op instructions both verbally and in writing. You may use ice packs and Tylenol during your recovery. Most patients need to plan to be off work for 3-5 days and bruising and swelling is to be expected and should improve by the end of 2 weeks. You will be asked to return to see Dr. Pfeiffer for a follow-up where she will remove your sutures. Makeup and contact lenses must be avoided during the first 2 weeks after surgery.
Although patients may experience swelling and bruising, improvement in appearance may continue for up to a year. The incision scars are concealed and will fade over time. Although aging continues, the results of blepharoplasty are long-lasting.