Eyelid Surgery (Blepharoplasty)

Why eyelid surgery?

Skin naturally loses elasticity over time, which can cause skin to collect above and below the eyelid. Also known as, Blepharoplasty, eyelid surgery reduces bagginess under the eye or sagging above the eye from excess skin. This surgery is usually done for cosmetic reasons, but can also aid in improving vision for those whose sagging upper eyelid impairs their sight.

Ptosis, which is drooping of the eyelids, can occur in both adults and children. Children with droopy eyelids should be seen to in order to detect the presence of amblyopia or “lazy eye.” Amblyopia is a condition in which vision does not develop properly in the eye.

What is eyelid surgery like?

Eyelid surgery is generally done using local anesthetic. You will receive a mild sedative to help you relax. The duration of the surgery is dependent on the amount of tissue to be removed, although the procedure usually takes about 45 minutes. Surgery on children is performed under general anesthesia.

When performed on the upper eyelids, your doctor will remove the excess skin, muscle and fatty tissue that tend to accumulate along the eyelids. If a lid lift is to be performed, the muscle lifting the lid is typically plicated. The incisions are made along the natural folds in the skin so that as they heal they become difficult, if not impossible, to see over time. The stitches are self-absorbing and dissolve over the course of a week.

When performed on the lower eyelids, provided there is not too much excess skin, your doctor will make the incision inside or behind the eyelid. This technique allows the removal of fatty tissue while avoiding the need for an external incision. If there is excessive skin or muscle folds below the eye, an incision may also be made just below the base of the eyelashes. As this incision heals, the fine scar should also become less visible.