Lake Norman Oral & Facial Surgery • Dr. Raymond J. Haigney II • 9727 Northcross Center Ct. Huntersville, NC 28078 • (704) 987-3132
9727 Northcross Center Ct. Huntersville, NC 28078 • (704) 987-3132
Eyelid Surgery Recovery
An eyelid lift, which is also known as blepharoplasty, is a procedure where skin and/or fat is removed from the eyelids. The term "eyelid lift" which is commonly used is an inaccurate description because the eyelid is not actually lifted during the surgery.
Upper blepharoplasty surgery uses incisions in order to remove the skin and fat. A thin stitch is used after removal to bring the skin together which allows for the creation of an eyelid crease.
Lower eyelid surgery typically involves skin incisions which are directly under the lash line. It can also involve an incision located on the inside of the eyelid, which is called a transconjunctival approach. The transconjunctival approach allows the doctor to access the eyelid without any visible incisions. This makes the technique ideal for patients who need fat removed or added. This approach can also be combined with laser resurfacing of the eyelid skin in order to reduce lines and wrinkles.
The presence of excess skin and fat in the upper eyelid can create a heavy looking eyelid, create and aged appearance, appear puffy and sometimes even block a patient’s vision. Upper blepharoplasty is performed in order to remove the excess skin and fat, which can also improve the patient’s field of vision.
Double eyelid surgery, which is also called Asian eyelid surgery, is performed in order to create or enhance the appearance of the upper eyelid crease. This type of surgery is commonly performed on people of Asian descent in order to "westernize" the appearance of their eyelids.
Lower blepharoplasty is often completed to remove excess skin and improve the contour of the eyelid by either adding or removing fat. Tightening the eyelid is sometimes needed in order to correct sagging, while laser skin resurfacing is often used to improve the appearance of wrinkles and overall skin texture.
Candidates for eyelid surgery
Individuals who have realistic expectations and are in good health are ideal candidates for eyelid surgery.
Preparing for eyelid surgery
Prior to undergoing eyelid surgery, patients should have a thorough examination and discussion regarding blepharoplasty, the potential risks and the benefits associated with the surgery. The patient should be sure to carefully follow the doctor’s preoperative instructions and thoroughly review the postoperative instructions. This allows the patient to have the needed medications for pain relief or additional items such a gel packs, artificial tears and gauze ready at home before they undergo surgery.
A physical may be required in order to be cleared for surgery if intravenous sedation or general anesthesia is used.
Recovery time for eyelid surgery
Patients usually have a relatively quick recovery time following blepharoplasty. Though bruising and swelling is usually most prominent the day after surgery, these symptoms typically go away quickly. The first 48 hours following the procedure, patients can use cool compresses which can help reduce bruising and swelling. Light activities such as walking can also help expedite the healing process. Thin bandages are typically placed over the incision sites and removed a few days later. The stitches may remain in the skin for close to a week. Self-absorbing stitches are sometimes used which don’t require removal.
Most people return to their normal activities about a week after blepharoplasty. Around two weeks following the eyelid surgery, most of the bruising and swelling should be gone.
Risks and complications
There are possible risks and complications from blepharoplasty, as there are with any surgery. The main risks and possible complications include the following:
- unable to close the eyes
- dry eyes
- abnormal eyelid position
- double vision
- vision loss
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