Blepharoplasty, commonly known as eyelid surgery, is done to improve the appearance of the eyelids, and can be done on the upper eyelids, the lower eyelids, or both. Many patients that undergo eyelid surgery are looking to improve upon loose/ sagging skin, fatty deposits (puffiness) under the eyes, under eye bags, lower eyelid drooping (showing white below the iris), remove excess skin and wrinkles on the lower eyelids, or even improve their eyesight.

Am I A Good Candidate?

You may be a good candidate for the procedure if you are generally healthy to undergo surgery, have a positive outlook and realistic expectations, and have no serious eye conditions. Because the eyelids are a part of the face, a drooping eyelid could actually be due to relaxation of the forehead and eyebrow skin, which would require a different procedure. When consulting with your surgeon they should examine your facial anatomy and will be able to help you understand the best procedure for you.

The Procedure

The incisions for eyelid surgery are done specifically so the scars will be well concealed in the natural folds of the eye. For the upper eyelid an incision within the natural crease is made that allows for removal/ repositioning of fat deposits, tightening of the muscles, and removal of the excess skin. For the lower eyelid the incisions are made right below the lower lash line. Again, this is how fat deposits and removal of excess skin can be achieved.

Once the procedure is completed the incisions are closed with sutures or skin glue. The suture will stay in for approximately one week after surgery.

Results and Recovery

During recovery a cold compress may be applied and used with any medications as directed by the surgeon. Initial results may include some swelling, bruising, irritation, dry eyes, and discomfort. The results of eyelid surgery will be long lasting, however it will take months before the final results are achieved.  Aging will factor into your results, but following post-operative instructions, communicating with your surgeon, and good sun protection techniques are key to longer lasting results.


James J. Chao MD, FACS

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