Human interaction is predominantly through facial expression and the ‘social triangle’ between eyes and nose is what we spend most of our time looking at. A fresh, young-looking face is therefore strongly influenced by our eyelids.
With age the skin may become wrinkled, saggy and the eyes appear smaller. Sometimes known as ‘eye lift’, blepharoplasty reshapes eyelids by removing redundant skin and can reproduce the crease lost in the upper lid by redundant skin. It is important to appreciate that surgery is not able to remove all wrinkling or change the overall appearance of the skin and may be combined with other techniques. Surgery may focus on the upper, lower or both eyelids.
Upper blepharoplasty – an incision is made in the natural crease and excess skin removed. If required, any bulging fat may be removed also.
Lower blepharoplasty – being more complex, and subject to gravity, there are more options with surgery to the lower eyelid. Surgery is not capable of removing all ‘crow’s feet’.
• Subciliary incision – the skin is lifted through an incision just below the eyelashes. This may be combined with a flap of muscle. Any bulging fat is either carefully removed or repositioned to reduce any ‘tear trough’
• Transconjunctival – although desired because the scar is placed inside the eyelid, it is not the most common because it cannot remove excess, wrinkled skin and very few people have only an excess of bulging fat with perfect skin over the top.
More questions about Blepharoplasty?
Although not surgery on the eye itself, visual assessment is recommended before surgery. Your surgeon will also ask about eye problems such as a tendency to dry, red or watering eyes as these they may be affected post-operatively. The result of blepharoplasty depends on many factors including age, skin condition, severity of laxity and wrinkles and, of course, expectations.
Upper eyelids alone are sometimes performed under local, but general anaesthetic is preferred. Four-lid blepharoplasty usually benefits from overnight stay to allow elevation, cool packs and resting of the eyes.
All incisions are closed with stitches that require removal in the dressing clinic within a week. You will also awake with sterile tapes covering the incisions and possibly some blurred vision due to the antibiotic ointment that is used at the end of the operation. Cool packs are also applied and greatly help minimise swelling.