Blepharoplasty: Eyelid surgery
Ptosis: Droopy upper eyelid related to weak muscle holding up the upper eyelid
Periorbital: Around the eye
Transconjunctival: Approach to eyelid surgery from inside the eye with no external scar
Ask anyone: What’s the first thing you notice when you meet someone? The eyes. The eyes are the most expressive sensory structures on the face. They reveal our feelings, our openness, mood, and character.
For that reason, surgery around the eyes needs to be performed conservatively, naturally, and with precision. To learn more about eyelid surgery (medically known as blepharoplasty), please call Desert Hills Plastic Surgery Center in Las Vegas at (702) 260-7707 to arrange a free consultation.
As we age, eye appearance changes from gravity, fatty tissue fluctuation, and regular facial expression. Eyes that were once open, relaxed, inviting, and youthful become droopy, wrinkled, strained, and tired-looking despite the fact that our inner selves are the same. Patients complain of a tired appearance, wrinkles around the eyes, heaviness of the upper eyelids, difficulty-applying makeup, and in severe situations, even difficulty with peripheral vision.
Besides the natural aging process, anatomic factors and genetics also predispose certain individuals to seek out the help of Dr. Brown in improving the appearance of the eyes. Both young and old individuals complain of dark circles or "bags" under the eyes. The eyebrows can be naturally low or descend over time and contribute to the appearance of excess skin or fullness involving the upper eyelids. The cheek pad can also descend over time or loose volume, unmasking underlying orbital anatomy, creating a hollow and "skeletonized" look. Lastly, the upper eyelid muscles can be weak; causing a droopy upper eyelid related to muscle function and not skin excess.
What Is Involved with Eyelid Surgery?
Blepharoplasty eyelid surgery is a common procedure used to reverse signs of aging and restore a youthful, well-rested look. It involves removal of redundant skin and/or fat from the upper and lower eyelids. It does not change certain anatomic conditions which can contribute to tired-looking eyes.
In patients whose low eyebrows contribute to the upper eyelid fullness, a brow lift procedure may be indicated. In patients with dark circles from hollowness, ideally the addition of volume to that area is the best treatment. In patients with droopy (ptotic) upper eyelids from muscle weakness, upper eyelid muscle surgery is recommended.
Dr. Brown will help you determine the best treatment plan for your condition and goals. Natural looking results are key after eyelid surgery. Surgery needs to be done inconspicuously and conservatively, preserving your natural eye appearance and shape so you look like yourself, only years younger. Preservation of fatty tissue in many cases is desired, to maintain a youthful look, and decrease risks for volume deficiency and hollowness of the eyelids as you continue to age.
Who Is a Candidate for Eyelid Surgery?
- A person with excessive wrinkling in the skin of the upper and lower eyelids
- Someone with puffy bags under the eyes making him or her look tired
- Individuals with droopy upper lids from skin excess or fat
- A person with a compromised visual field
- Individuals with prominent globes, lower eyelid looseness or laxity, generalized hollowness or depressions contributing to dark circles, and severe dry eye problems may not be candidates for blepharoplasty surgery
Goal of Eyelid Surgery:
- A more youthful and rested appearance
- Maintenance of current eye shape
- Stability or improvement in lower eyelid position and support
- Symmetry, although perfect symmetry is unrealistic
- Improved vision if excess upper eyelid skin was interfering with sight
- Longevity in the result
- Non-visible scars
- Do not expect complete eyelid wrinkle eradication, but softening. Conservative skin excision must be done to ensure complete eyelid closure after surgery
Blepharoplasty Procedure Description:
- This facial procedure is done on an outpatient basis under general anesthesia or local anesthesia with light sedation. General anesthesia is preferred for patient comfort and cooperation, as this is a very sensitive and delicate area
- Incisions are made in the upper and lower eyelids following the natural contour lines and creases. Skin and sometimes excess fat are removed, the lower eyelid is supported, and the incisions are closed with very fine suture. Surgery is individualized per patient to correct the issue at hand, whether it be skin only, skin and muscle, fat, or a combination of interventions
- Dr. Brown always lifts and tightens the lower lid so that rounding of the lower lid does not occur and the lower lid remains well-positioned and youthful looking
- In patients with fatty tissue bags of the lower eyelid, and good overlying skin tone, a Transconjunctival Blepharoplasty can be performed. This means that there is no external scar and no skin take-out. Only fatty tissue is removed from the eyelid from an approach inside the eyelid
- Mild discomfort is relieved with oral pain medication. Ice compresses are used intermittently for the first 24-48 hours for comfort and to reduce swelling and bruising
- You must sleep with your head of bed elevated for the first week after surgery to keep swelling and bruising to a minimum. No bending over, lifting, exercise, or straining the first week
- Temporary eye dryness and tightness is to be expected for 2 weeks. Maintenance of ocular moisture during this time is important using artificial tears and prescribed ophthalmic ointment
- Sutures are removed in 5-6 days, you may wear makeup afterwards
- Bruising and swelling is variable and unpredictable from person to person. Expect minor bruising and swelling for 7-10 days. Minor asymmetries are to be expected during the healing phase with regard to the amount of swelling, bruising, tightness, and speed of resolution from eye to eye. You should not spend time analyzing this in the mirror
- Most patients return to work within 7 days
- Patients report very little discomfort and ease of recovery
- Patients can resume exercise as tolerated in 2-3 weeks after the procedure
- Light massage helps relax tight lids. Naturalness is usually achieved by 6 weeks
- Patients with low eyebrows benefit from Brow Lift surgery. This is commonly done in conjunction with blepharoplasty surgery for a complete and natural looking periorbital rejuvenation.
- Light chemical peels can be performed to improve upon fine lines or crepey skin of the lower eyelid
- Fillers such as Juvederm or Restylane may be recommended to conservatively fill “tear-trough” depressions which typically involve the lower and medial aspect of the lower eyelid, and contribute to the appearance of dark circles. Botox may be recommended as an adjunct for deep or persistent crows feet lines.
- Weak upper eyelid muscles which cause droopy upper eyelid positions are treated with "Ptosis Surgery," where the muscle, called the levator muscle, is tightened to the upper eyelid. We refer these cases to our oculoplastic colleagues.
- Blepharoplasty surgery is a main component of complete facial rejuvenation surgery which often includes facelift, neck lift, and brow lift surgery in combination with eyelid surgery. With a comprehensive approach, there is one surgery, one recovery, and a uniformly, harmonious result.
Blepharoplasty surgery is a gratifying and straightforward procedure, which predictably improves eye appearance and enhances your best feature. Dr. Brown is precise and conservative with eyelid surgery while ensuring an excellent and often dramatic result.
A refined, natural, "non-operated on" look is essential. Dr. Brown is known for her ability to formulate and execute an individualized surgical treatment plan to account for the variability seen from person to person. Her consistently excellent results enliven and enhance natural beauty that has been there all along. While it is normal to experience continued appearance changes from aging, gravity, environment, and lifestyle, in the majority of cases, the results can last a lifetime.
Contact Board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Hayley Brown for more information about blepharoplasty and other facial rejuvenation options by calling (702) 260-7707. Our facial plastic surgeon serves Henderson and surrounding areas in Las Vegas, Nevada.