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The eyes are the “windows of the soul” so they deserve to be seen in the best possible setting. Do you feel that your droopy eyelids are detracting from your youthful appearance and literally dragging down your good looks? Why not check out eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty) – a safe and simple procedure in which the excess fat and folds of skin around the eyes are surgically removed to restore a youthful and bright-eyed appearance. Unfortunately, one’s upper eyelids and sometimes one’s lower eyelids too, may become droopy or baggy, which is a natural part of the aging process. The eyebrows also may sag or droop, which is also a part of the same process.
The procedure generally lasts from about 20 minutes to two hours, depending on the complexity of the surgery, and also depending on whether both the upper and lower eyelids are involved. It may be performed under a general anesthesia if the blepharoplasty is more complicated – or you may require only local anesthesia. Generally, incisions are made in the natural folds of the eyelid, i.e. in the crease of the upper eyelid, just beneath the lashes and behind the lower eyelid. This ensures that incisions are practically unnoticeable after they have healed.*
The surgeon will carefully and precisely remove excess skin and fat pads, along with some underlying muscle, if required. Various surgical instruments, e.g. scalpels, radio-frequency cutting devices, surgical scissors, and even cutting lasers, may be employed in this procedure. You will wake up to a fresh, renewed and rejuvenated appearance, as if the years have rolled away, with your eyes once again showing their sparkle!*
A major reason for considering eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty), for many people, is the removal and tightening of excess eyelid skin for a brighter, more youthful appearance. Blepharoplasty can remove excess fat, skin and sometimes muscle also, from either the upper or lower eyelids. In some cases, you may need only skin removed while muscle is left intact — or, in some cases, you might need to have the procedure done on both upper and lower eyelids.
However, it is to be noted that the aging process will not come to a halt, and, as with almost any cosmetic procedure, the improvement in your appearance caused by an eye lift will not last indefinitely. Nor is it likely that your life will change after blepharoplasty! Having realistic expectations will result in a more satisfying experience for you.
The procedure generally lasts from about 20 minutes to two hours, depending on the complexity of the surgery, and also depending on whether both the upper and lower eyelids are involved. It may be performed under a general anesthesia if the blepharoplasty is more complicated – or you may require only local anesthesia. Generally, incisions are made in the natural folds of the eyelid, i.e. in the crease of the upper eyelid, just beneath the lashes and behind the lower eyelid. This ensures that incisions are practically unnoticeable after they have healed.
In this case, ignorance is certainly NOT bliss – so if you have all the facts at your fingertips, you will be ready to go in for this procedure without any false fears or preconceived notions.
Here is the information that will dispel your doubts and address any concerns that you may have.
Blepharoplasty begins with a visit to the cosmetic surgeon to assess your suitability for the procedure. You need to be in reasonably good health, and also, you need to have realistic expectations. The surgery will certainly improve your appearance*, but don’t expect it to change your life!!
Blepharoplasty of the upper eyelid uses incisions on the skin to remove excess skin and fat. A delicate and almost invisible stitch then brings the skin together to create a new eyelid crease.
Surgery of the lower eyelid involves skin incisions made directly below the lower lash line or, alternatively, an incision made on the inner surface of the eyelid, known as a trans-conjunctival approach. This allows the eyelid fat to be removed without any visible incisions, so this technique is perfect for patients who need fat removed or added.* It can also be combined with laser resurfacing of the eyelid skin to help reduce fine lines and wrinkles.*
You should always have a detailed discussion with the surgeon, about how the blepharoplasty will be performed, and all the potential risks associated with the procedure. Be sure that you carefully follow the pre-operative instructions given by your surgeon. You should also study the post-operative instructions given by him or her, before the surgery is performed.
In case you are under the care of a physician for any other ailments, you will need to have the procedure “cleared” by him or her, especially if you are going to be undergoing intravenous sedation or general anesthesia.
On the day of the surgery you will see a certain amount of swelling and bruising, but this should disappear within a short while. After the procedure, most people need only non-prescription pain relievers. The area will be bandaged for some time, and your stitches should be removed within a week or so. Most people can resume day to day activities in about 10 days, while the swelling and bruising should disappear completely in about two weeks.*
As with all surgeries, there is a certain amount of risk involved. These risks may include infections, bleeding, scarring, dry eyes, abnormal eyelid position, inability to close your eyes, double vision, and in the worst case, loss of vision. However, it is to be noted these side effects are very rare, and will usually disappear in a short while.
Almost everyone who undergoes eyelid surgery reports a high level of satisfaction and an improved self image. Those whose vision was impeded by excess folds of skin and fat often have improvements in the visual field that they can to see.* No wonder, then, that blepharoplasty has become one of the most commonly performed and successful procedures!
What Exactly Is Cosmetic Blepharoplasty?
Cosmetic eye bag surgery is a procedure that is not required medically – it is carried out only to improve your appearance. The goal is to give you a more youthful appearance. Imperfections of the eye area, particularly bags under the eyes and droopy eyelids, are among the more prominent indicators of aging. Blepharoplasty is the only way to rid yourself of these unsightly bags, with lasting effect*.
Am I a good candidate for Blepharoplasty?
For a successful procedure you need to be in reasonably good health. Your general physician should give you the go-ahead for the surgery, especially if it involves sedation or general anesthesia. You should also have realistic expectations – the surgery will definitely improve your looks but you should not expect it to be a life- changing experience.
What Does Cosmetic Blepharoplasty involve?
An eye bag lift normally involves the removal of excess skin and fat deposits around the eyes and also, if required, the tightening of selected muscles around the eyelids. Usually the surgeon will cut out a small, crescent-shaped section of eyelid skin, and then remove small pockets of fat that have settled in the lids, thus giving them a puffy appearance. The skin is then stitched together with delicate, almost invisible stitches, so that the eyelid area is tightened. This is known as “transcutaneous blepharoplasty.
What other Cosmetic Blepharoplasty procedures are available to me?
“Transconjunctival blepharoplasty.” is usually commonly used to remove excess fatty tissue from under the eyes. This is the tissue that forms unsightly puffy “bags”. In this case, your surgeon makes an incision from the inside of the eyelid with a laser or scalpel, and removes the excess fat.
How long will the surgery last?
The surgery will usually take between one to three hours, and you may be given either local or general anesthesia. You can generally return home on the same day.
Will the scars be visible later?
The scars will not be visible later as your surgeon will carefully hide the incision lines. The cuts will be made in the natural folds of skin above and below the eye. Normally they are made in the creases of the upper lids and under the lashes of the lower eyelids.
Are there any risks involved in this surgery?
As is the case with any surgical operation, blepharoplasty can sometimes cause infection or scarring. Good after-care of the incision after the surgery can minimize these risks. If the doctor’s instructions are carefully followed, the chances of any complications are minimal.
What after – effects should I expect?
After the procedure, you need to follow the surgeon’s instructions carefully.
Your eye doctor will tell you which pain medication you require. You should expect some discomfort during the period immediately after surgery. But if the pain is severe or any vision changes occur, call your doctor immediately.
During the recovery period, your eye area will be bruised and red, and your eyes will be swollen, especially during the first few days. However, you should be back to normal within a week or two.
How much will the treatment Cost?
The cost for this treatment will vary from clinic to clinic and surgeon to surgeon. You can check out a few options to get an idea of the cost in your area. You must remember that for a procedure as delicate as this, it is worthwhile to pay a little more to get the best clinic and best surgeon possible.
The same is true if you are considering a blepharoplasty. It is essential that you are evaluated by a competent physician prior to going ahead with the procedure. The doctor should ask for your medical history, and carefully assess your general health, paying particular attention to the following areas, where a blepharoplasty may be contraindicated:-
Blepharoplasty should be very carefully considered in candidates who have the following conditions:-
If you have any of the above conditions, or any other health problems, the surgeon will decide whether you are a fit candidate
For the blepharoplasty he will also consider your expectations from the surgery. While a blepharoplasty will most certainly improve your appearance, you need to be aware that it is not a miracle cure that will change your life.
Pre Surgery Precautions:-
Your doctor should discuss the forehead lift procedure with you and explain the precautions that you need to take before the surgery.
- You will need to stop taking any medication that can thin your blood and prevent it from clotting normally. This includes pain relievers, e.g. aspirin and ibuprofen. You will probably need to stop taking these medications one to two weeks beforehand, to reduce the possibility of excess bleeding during the procedure.
- You will also be told to stop smoking in the weeks before and after the eyelid bags removal procedure.
- Some surgeons may prescribe vitamin C and vitamin K for 10 days prior to surgery in the belief that this helps the healing process.
- Eat only a light meal like soup the evening before your surgery
- Do not eat or drink anything after midnight.
- On the morning of your surgery, you should take any essential medications that you normally take, e.g. for blood pressure, with just a small sip of water.
- Do not wear any kind of makeup on the day of surgery.
- Make sure that someone is available to transport you home and look after you during the first several hours after you are released following surgery.
You should study the doctor’s instructions carefully and be sure that you follow his directions.
Post Surgery Precautions:-
After your eye lift procedure, the doctor will apply a topical antibiotic ointment, and, if required, an eye patch.
On the first day, you should apply a cold pack every hour, in order to reduce the swelling and bruising to a minimum. On the second day, you can apply cold packs every few hours for about 10 to 15 minutes at a time.
After 48 hours, you should apply warm compresses for faster healing.
Your eye doctor will tell you which pain medication to take, if needed. Most people need only non-prescription pain relievers.
You should expect mild discomfort during the period immediately after surgery. But if the pain is severe or any vision changes occur, call your doctor immediately.
While you recover, your eye area will be bruised and red and your eyes will be swollen,, especially during the first few days. The whites of your eyes also may become red and bloodshot. It may take a few weeks for healing to be complete, during which time you should not wear eye makeup.
You can start wearing contact lenses again when the eyelid swelling disappears. If you wear eyeglasses, however, you can put them on carefully right after the surgery.
Often the sutures used for your procedure will dissolve in about a week. If non-dissolving sutures are used, however, then your surgeon will remove them about a week after the procedure.
Almost all people who undergo blepharoplasty report satisfaction with the procedure and improved self image. Those whose vision was hampered by excess skin folds usually have improvements in the visual field they are able to see.
Possible Complications of Eyelid Surgery
A complication that occurs sometimes is a temporary inability to close the eyelids completely. This means that your eyes may become extremely dry. But usually this condition resolves after a few weeks.
If the condition persists beyond two or three months, an additional procedure might be required to restore enough skin to the eyelid to enable complete closure over the eye.
Other potential complications of blepharoplasty include:
- Eyelid infection
- Double vision from problems with eye alignment
- Noticeable surgical scarring
- Numbness in the eyelids
However, these complications are very rare and are not likely to occur if the all proper precautions are followed, and the procedure is carried out by a properly qualified surgeon.
- Before doing any treatment please consult your doctor to confirm if the treatment is the right one for you.*