Why have Eyelid Surgery (Blepharoplasty)? As we age, the skin loses its elasticity, and our muscles slacken. For the eyelids, this results in the development of loose skin which collects as folds in the upper lids and forms deepening creases in the lower lids. Additionally, there is a slackening of the muscle beneath the skin allowing the fat, which cushions the eyes in their sockets, to protrude forward to give the appearance of eye bags.
Eyelid surgery is designed to correct:
- Loose or sagging skin that creates folds or disturbs the contour of the upper eyelid
- Excess fatty deposits that appear as puffiness in the upper eyelids
- Bags under the eyes
- Droopiness of the lower eyelids, showing the white below the iris
- Excess skin and fine wrinkles of the lower eyelid
Eyelid Surgery (Blepharoplasty) Procedure
Blepharoplasty Is a procedure used to improve the appearance of the upper eyelids, lower eyelids or both and produce a younger, more relaxed look to the surrounding area of your eyes by removing excess skin, bags and fatty deposits.
The incision lines for eyelid surgery are designed to be well concealed within the natural structures of the eyelid.
For the upper eye, the incision is made in the natural crease line above your eyelashes and extends into the “crow’s foot” area at the side of the eye. Droopy conditions of the upper eyelid can be corrected through the incision allowing repositioning of fat deposits, tightening of the muscles and tissue and removal of excess skin.
The incision for the lower eyelid is made just below, the lower lash line and extends to the natural “laugh line”. Through this incision excess skin in the lower eyelid is removed. If excess skin is minimal, an incision inside the lower eyelid is an alternate technique to correct lower eyelid conditions and redistribute or remove excess fat.
This procedure is known as transconjunctival blepharoplasty and allows for contouring of the lower eyelids and circles under the eyes, without leaving visible scars, but the procedure is reserved for younger patients.
Eyelid surgery can be performed under local anaesthetic and sedation or general anaesthetic. It is usually performed as a day case procedure, or it may be done at the same time as a facelift to enhance the results.
The Eyelid Surgery Consultation
The consultation with your plastic surgeon is the first step to communicate your feelings about what you want to achieve and how an eyelid surgery can enhance and rejuvenate your appearance. It is imperative to highlight to your surgeon the elements that you find most objectionable about the appearance of your eyelids and to try to define what you would like to see as a result. The purpose is to bring focus and clarity to the concerns that you have regarding the appearance, but also to establish realistic expectations and a clear sense of direction for your change. During the consultation, you will be asked some questions about your health, desires and lifestyle.
Be prepared to discuss:
- Why you want the surgery, your expectations and desired outcomes
- Medical conditions, drug allergies, problems with the thyroid gland or ophthalmological issues and medical treatments
- Use of current medications, alcohol, tobacco and drugs
- Previous surgeries
Your surgeon will also:
- Evaluate your general health status, ask about any previous facial surgery, and any pre-existing health conditions or risks factors
- Take photographs for your medical records
- Discuss your goals for the procedure and explain what results you can reasonably expect.
- Discuss any risks or potential complications and what to expect during your recovery.
- Consider the use of anaesthesia during your surgery
- Ask about any possible thyroid or kidney disease as these can produce swelling of the eyelids, and about any history of eyelid conditions and dryness of the eyes.
What are the limitations of the Surgery?
It is important to understand that only the wrinkles which are in the skin which is cut away will be removed. The area of the eyelids within the bony margin of the orbit (eye sockets)is the area of treatment.
The folds of skin extending onto the cheek will not typically be improved. Wrinkles in the area of the crow’s feet will remain, although the skin is much tighter
Where a low positioned brow or crow’s feet at the outer edge of the eyes contribute to the ageing appearance of the eyes, a brow lift may be more appropriate than or recommended in conjunction with the eyelid surgery.
Some residual wrinkles are suitable for treatment by chemical peeling. Skin resurfacing techniques may be recommended to improve further the tone and surface appearance of skin surrounding the eye, and in some cases as a substitute for excision of minimal excess lower eyelid skin.