Eyelid Surgery also known as Blepharoplasty is the plastic surgery operation for correcting defects, deformities, and disfigurations of the eyelids; and for aesthetically modifying the eye region of the face.
With the excision and the removal, or the repositioning (or both) of excess tissues, such as skin and adipocyte fat, and the reinforcement of the corresponding muscle and tendon tissues, the blepharoplasty procedure resolves functional and cosmetic problems of the periorbita, which is the area from the eyebrow to the upper portion of the cheek.
You need eyelid surgery if you have:
- Loose or sagging skin that creates folds or disturbs the natural contour of the upper eyelid, sometimes impairing vision
- Upper and lower eyelids appear puffy, making your eyes look tired and aged
- Deep grooves under your eyes
- Drooping lower eyelids that reveal white below the iris
- Excess skin and fine wrinkles of the lower eyelid
- Upper eye surface is too small or not smooth enough to apply makeup
This procedure doesn’t involve crow’s feet, eliminate dark circles under the eyes, or lift sagging eyebrows. Features of your ethnic or racial heritage cannot be erased, though they may be altered.
Preparation for your operation
The procedure can be done either under local or general anesthesia. If you will have this surgery under general anesthesia, you will be instructed to have no food atleast 8 hours prior to this any surgery, this includes any sweet like chewing gum. If there is no fasting instructions given, you must not consume any food or drink from midnight before your scheduled surgery. Clients who do not comply with this requirement risk having their surgery delayed or risk being denied surgery.
DO NOT take any Aspirin and NSAIDS drugs for at least 2 weeks prior to surgery. (Aspirin may be re commenced after 48hrs post op.) If you take Aspirin or any other form of blood thinning medication for a medical condition, please discuss this with Dr. Thanakom.
Smoking must be stopped atleast 3-4 weeks. If you cannot quit, cut back as much as possible. Smoking constrict the blood vessels, which can delay wound healing. While drinking alcohol must be stopped atleast a day or two prior to surgery.
The procedure usually takes 1-3 hours. If the procedure is done under local anesthesia, you can go home right after the surgery. While if under general anesthesia, you are required to stay in the hospital overnight.
Do not wear contact lenses, makeup, nail polish, jewelry, including any body piercings, hair accessories containing metal (such as barrettes or clips with metal springs, etc.) on the day of your surgery.
Step 1 – Anesthesia
Medications are administered. The choices include local anesthetic, intravenous sedation or general anesthesia.
Step 2 – Incision
Dr Thanakom makes incisions following the natural lines of your eyelids: in the creases of your upper lids, and just below the lashes in your lower lids. The incisions can extend into the crow’s feet or laughs line at the outer corners of your eyes. If you have a pocket of fat beneath your lower eyelids but don’t need to have any skin removed, your surgeon may perform a transconjunctival blepharoplasty.
Step 3 – Excess Tissue, Fat and Skin Removal
While you are lying down during blepharoplasty, Dr Thanakom will make precise markings to designate where excess skin and fat pads need to be removed. Some underlying muscle also may be removed. These tissues are removed with surgical instruments such as scalpels, surgical scissors, radio-frequency cutting devices and sometimes cutting lasers. Sometimes fat may be redistributed in the lower lids to eliminate puffiness or bulges. Dr Thanakom may make other adjustments to correct special problems such as muscle laxity.
Step 4 – Closing the incisions
Dr Thanakom will then apply sutures or tissue adhesives (glue) to smooth and reconfigure areas around the eyebrows and eyelids. Sutures are invisible to the eye and are commonly self-dissolving. In most cases, there is virtually no detectable scar.
After your eyelid surgery, Dr Thanakom will provide you set of take home medications such as antibiotics, pain killers, ointment etc.
Keep your head raised as much as possible for several days. Place cold packs over the area to reduce swelling and bruising. Wrap the cold pack in a towel before applying. This helps prevent cold injury to the eyes and skin.
For the first few weeks after surgery, you may experience excessive tearing, sensitivity to light, or (more rarely) temporary changes in your eyesight, such as blurring or double vision.
Stitches are removed on the fifth or seventh after surgery. Swelling and discoloration around your eyes typically persists for no more than seven to ten days. Scars may be red initially, but fade with time.
DO NOT wear contact lenses for at least 2 weeks. Keep activities to a minimum for 3 to 5 days, and avoid strenuous activities that raise the blood pressure for about 3 weeks. This includes lifting, bending, and rigorous sports.
For the first two weeks after your surgery, wear dark sunglasses to protect the eyes from irritation caused by sun and wind.
How Long Will the Results Last?
Your eyelid surgery results is permanent. For the most part, removal of hooding and upper eyelid skin is a procedure that is performed only once. As aging continues, your brow can drop or descend, causing excess skin to reappear on the upper eyelid, but in this case the solution is a brow lift, not a second upper blepharoplasty. Lower blepharoplasty is usually performed to remove eye bags and puffiness around the eyes, and it too should only need to be performed once.
What are the risks involved with eyelid surgery?
- Eyelid infection
- Vision loss from retrobulbar hemorrhage
- Double vision from problems with eye alignment
- Numbness of the eyelids
- Noticeable surgical scarring
- Malpositioned eyelids
- Overcorrection (removing too much skin)
- Undercorrection (not removing enough of the excessive skin)
Is there much scarring with a blepharoplasty?
As with any surgical procedure, some scarring is to be expected. However, scarring with blepharoplasty is minimal and practically nonexistent after several weeks to months of healing.
What is Asian blepharoplasty?
Asian blepharoplasty is an eyelid surgery that creates a crease in the eyelid. It is popular among many Asians who have what’s referred to as a “single eyelid” (with no crease) and would prefer a “double eyelid” (one with a crease).
Can I have blepharoplasty after LASIK surgery?
Yes. LASIK surgery is not a contraindication to having blepharoplasty or other cosmetic eye surgery. However it is strongly recommended to consult this with your LASIK surgeon to determine how long you should wait after your vision correction surgery before undergoing blepharoplasty.
Am I too young for a blepharoplasty?
There is no lower age limit. Some patients have excess upper lid skin, or prominent lower lid bags, at an early age. These conditions are often hereditary, and can be corrected with blepharoplasty surgery.