Q: Can you tell me about the surgery to remove saggy skin around my old eyes?
A: Eyelid surgery, or blepharoplasty, is a surgical procedure to improve the appearance of the upper and/or lower eyelids, with lasting results. It may also correct functional eyelid problems, such as impaired vision, which may allow insurance coverage to apply. Otherwise, it is considered cosmetic surgery. A blepharoplasty can remove or lessen: bags under your eyes, loose or sagging skin that creates folds or disturbs the natural contour of the upper eyelid, fatty deposits that you may think of as “puffiness,” drooping lower eyelids that reveal white below the iris, and excess skin and fine wrinkles of your lower eyelid. After a consultation on your specific needs and goals, your procedure is usually performed under general anesthesia. All incision lines are designed so minimal resultant scars will be well concealed within the natural structures of the eyelid. The upper eyelid can be corrected through an incision within the natural crease on the eyelid, which allows for removal or repositioning of fat deposits, tightening of muscles and removal of excess skin. Lower eyelid conditions may be corrected with an incision just below the lower lash line to remove excess skin, and reposition or remove excess fat.
Eyelid incisions typically are closed with a subcuticular suture, which is removed in about a week. While there usually is little pain involved, there can be swelling or bruising, so I usually use a laser to reduce the bruising after the procedure. Most patients return to their jobs in 3-10 days. A beautiful new you will appear gradually as swelling and bruising subside to reveal a smooth, better-defined eyelid and surrounding region, and a more alert and rejuvenated appearance.