Eyelid Surgery - Blepharoplasty
Skin, muscles around our eyes and supportive tissues are factors that are responsible to prevent sagging of eyelids. As you age, the skin loses elasticity and the muscles and supportive tissues weaken, resulting in sagging of upper eyelid and sagging and accompanying under-eye bags in lower eyelid.
Those structural changes in eyelids cause a tired and older facial appearance.
Eye-lid surgery (also known as blepharoplasty) is usually done for cosmetic reasons. This surgery provides successful results especially in patients with sagging upper eyelids.
When the sagging of the eyelid is severe, it can also cause visual problems.
Eye-lid surgeries do not help dark discoloration under eyes and under-eye wrinkles (goose feet). Eye-lid surgeries are usually combined with or done as a part of other procedures such as laser resurfacing, filler injections or forehead lift.
If you want to have an eyelid surgery, please consult our plastic surgeons for techniques, expectations, conditions that contraindicate eyelid surgery and potential risks.
Why is this procedure done?
Aging causes loss of elasticity in skin of eyelids and when it is accompanied by weakening of muscles and supportive tissues, the gravity force sags the eyelids. Extra skin folds develop in upper and lower eyelids.
Best candidates for eyelid surgery are persons with good overall health and realistic expectations. This surgery is more commonly preferred by middle aged and older persons. However, it can be performed in younger patients due to medical necessities.
An eyelid surgery may enhance your self-confidence by improving appearance of your eyes. Although effects on upper eyelids are usually long lasting, you may notice sagging in the future due to aging. However, surgery is rarely repeated for lower eyelids.
You should discuss aim of the eyelid surgery with our plastic surgeon in order to get most realistic and satisfactory outcomes.
Potential complications are very rare for eyelid surgery. These risks are as follows:
- Dry eye
- Dark discoloration or abnormal scar formation in skin of eyelids
- Difficulty closing eyes or other abnormalities
- Visual problems
- Anesthesia-related complications
Although all possible measures that modern medicine allows are taken to prevent occurrence of risks, it is no means possible to warrant that the risks will be completely eliminated.
Our expert surgery team will employ all practices to minimize the risk of complications and our plastic surgeons will preoperatively inform you about risks listed above and all other potential complications and will address all your concerns.
The first phase of preoperative preparation is same in all Medicana Hospitals.
After you decide to have an eyelid surgery and discuss with our plastic surgeons, following examinations are performed to decide whether it is an option for you:
- Review of health history
- A detailed physical examination
- Necessary laboratory tests and radiology studies
- Assessment by anesthesiologist and other laboratory tests and radiology studies to minimize anesthesia-related complications
After it is verified that the surgery does not pose risk, you will be asked to quit smoking, if you are a smoker, and to stop taking certain medications that increase risk of bleeding. All other prescribed and over-the-counter medications, herbal products and supplements will also be questioned and you will be informed to continue or stop taking them.
You will also be instructed to stop eating and drinking at a particular time before the surgery and you should strictly follow this instruction in order to undergo the surgery at the scheduled date.
After eyelid surgery, it is recommended that you have a companion. You will need to limit your work and social activities for a few days after the surgery. Also, it is absolutely important that you do not rub your eyes, avoid heavy work and swim, apply cold compression on your eyes and follow other instructions of your doctor. Some patients experience dry eye after the surgery. This rarely lasts more than two weeks. You should see your doctor, if dry eye persists more than two weeks.
Moreover, it is reasonable to plan discharge, post-discharge accommodation and travel at this phase in order to manage postoperative period better.
Surgery and early postoperative period
If both upper and lower eyelids are operated on, the procedure can take about 2 hours. The operation is carried out under local anesthesia combined with sedation.
Your plastic surgeon usually makes the incisions over the natural skin folds or creases on your eyelids. After an incision is made, excess fat, tissue and muscle are removed. Very small stitches are placed on the incision line to ensure cosmetic results. The stitches placed on the upper lid will remain for approximately one week. For lower eyelids, stitching may not be required depending on the technique.
After any of these procedures, your doctor may suggest laser resurfacing.
You may feel pain and recognize swelling in your eyelid(s) after the surgery. Or, you may even notice bruising in skin of the region. These are expected symptoms that will spontaneously disappear within several weeks.
The scar tissue that forms along the incision line will fade over time, but its color will never be identical to your skin tone.
Although you will feel minimal pain, your plastic surgeon will prescribe pain killer pills to manage the pain.
If your plastic surgeon used non-absorbable stitches and placed a drain to prevent accumulation of excess fluid and/or blood beneath the incision line, your doctor will instruct you the date they will be removed (usually the first postoperative follow-up visit).
Your plastic surgeon will inform you whether you need to be observed or you should stay in hospital.
After you recover from anesthesia and you are ready to walk, you will be mobilized by or under supervision of our healthcare professionals.
Before you are discharged, your plastic surgeon or another healthcare professional will inform you about the time interval that you should rest and the time that you can start non-strenuous exercises. Although routine daily life activities are allowed, your doctor will instruct you to avoid strenuous works for a particular time.
It is substantially important to follow those instructions to facilitate recovery period and get best outcome from the surgery. Therefore, please ask all your questions to your plastic surgeon before you leave the hospital.
You should visit your plastic surgeon for follow-up visits that are scheduled before you are discharged.
If you experience warmth and redness in your incision line, or if you have a fever or any symptoms that you think are due to surgery after you are discharged, contact your plastic surgeon immediately.
In the case of eyelid surgery, your eyes and eye contour will appear younger and healthier. It is an indisputable fact that these effects will contribute to your self confidence.
It may take several weeks for the results of the eyelid surgery to be fully visible. Although effects are long lasting, negative effects of aging cannot be completely eliminated. It will be useful to talk to your plastic surgeon on precautions that can be taken to prolong the time of effect.