- As both women and men age, there is loss of volume of the face as well as the structures around the eyes
- Leading to less support of the tissues resulting in excess upper lid skin and lower lid hollows
- Women are mostly concerned with excess skin of their upper eyelids, crepe skin of both lids, and fat bags/hollows of the lower lids
- The scar is generally hidden within the natural crease of the upper eyelid and can be covered with concealer after about a week
Nobody wants to look tired. Being told you appear unrested usually sounds like code for not looking your best. This usually has to do with the appearance of the eyes. Over time, eyelid skin can become loose, saggy and puffy, making us look tired and as a consequence, years older than we are. Achieving aesthetic goals that improve the appearance of our eyes is possible with upper eyelid surgery.
“As both women and men age, there is loss of volume of the face as well as the structures around the eyes,” said Dr. Michael Persky, a facial plastic surgeon in Encino, California. “This leads to less support of the tissues resulting in excess upper lid skin and lower lid hollows.”
According to the Canadian Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (CSAPS), patients may seek eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty) to correct age-related problems or inherited traits, such as bags under the eyes. Blepharoplasty ranked third in the top five cosmetic procedures performed in 2013, according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS).
“Women are mostly concerned with excess skin of their upper eyelids, crepe skin of both lids, and fat bags/hollows of the lower lids,” Dr. Persky continued.
During the procedure, fat deposits and excess skin are removed from the eyelid, according to the CSAPS. However, in Dr. Persky’s clinic, only excess skin is removed.
“In the past, blepharoplasty involved removing skin, muscle, and fat of the upper lid, which led to a very hollowed out appearance,” Dr. Persky explained. “Today, we perform upper lid skin only bleph in the office under local anesthesia.”
An upper bleph can provide a refreshed appearance of the eyes, resulting in the patient looking more rested and alert, according to the ASPS. It involves an incision that is not easily visible.
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“The scar is generally hidden within the natural crease of the upper eyelid and can be covered with concealer after about a week,” Dr. Persky added.
According to the ASPS, a lower eyelid blepharoplasty incision can be made below the lower lash line or inside the lower eyelid. This procedure can correct bags under the eyes, droopiness of the lower lids, as well as remove excess skin and wrinkles.
“The benefit of these procedures is rejuvenated eyes. Instead of looking tired after a full night’s sleep, patients who have blepharoplasty look rested after staying up all night.” For crepe skin, Dr. Persky explained that laser treatment is the best repair option.
Precision is key when performing a blepharoplasty.
“The most important aspect of the surgery is excising the proper amount of skin . . . just enough that the patient can still close their eyes, yet not too much that they are unable to completely close their eyelids.”
While every patient is different, recovering from an upper eyelid bleph usually takes around seven to 10 days and common side effects include swelling and bruising, Dr. Persky said. The CSAPS noted that high blood pressure and diabetes can increase the risks of this procedure, and that your surgeon should be aware of any allergies you have and how they affect your eyes and if you have other eye problems such as “dry eye.”
Post-operation, a patient may experience dryness or irritation of the eye, tearing, sensitivity to light, temporary reduction in eyelid sensation and impaired eyelid function, according to the CSAPS. This may require additional surgery. The ASPS says ointment and cold compresses may be applied and that until the healing process is final, proper sun protection (including tinted sunglasses) is a must. Dr. Persky said the main benefit of this procedure has to do with the fact that there’s only a certain amount of skin in the eyelid area to correct.
“The best part is that when performed properly, upper bleph only needs to be done once in a lifetime.”
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