The eye surgeons at The Eye Clinic of Texas perform eyelid surgery and eyelifts such as blepharoplasty for droopy, saggy and puffy lids. Your eyes are one of the most important aspects of your appearance, and one of the first areas to show signs of aging. For some, this can occur as early as your twenties to early thirties. If the eyes project a lack of energy due to overhanging skin and puffiness, you may appear tired or older. Conversely, if the eyes are more open and relatively free of creases and folds, you will probably seem more rested and youthful. Eyelid surgery such as eyelifts or blepharoplasty can be performed for cosmetic reasons to help you look your best but also when the eyelid structure and position interfere with vision or eye health.
Blepharoplasty can be performed on the upper eyelid, lower eyelid, or both. Sometimes excess upper eyelid tissue obstructs the upper visual field or can weigh down the eyelid and cause the eyes to feel tired. Most often, people choose blepharoplasty to improve their appearance by making the area around their eyes firmer. When blepharoplasty is performed to improve vision rather than for cosmetic reasons only, the costs may be covered by your health insurance plan. Blepharoplasty for the lower eyelid removes the large bags under the eyes. It is unusual for third-party payers to cover lower-lid blepharoplasty. There are two types of blepharoplasty, upper eyelid blepharoplasty and lower eyelid blepharoplasty where each procedure corresponds to the area of the face where it is performed.
Upper eyelid blepharoplasty involves the improvement of two characteristics of the aging upper eyelid area. The first is correction of excess skin of the upper eyelid, a condition referred to as "hooding of the upper lid." The second condition that can be corrected is the puffiness that is seen in the inner corner and middle of the eyelid as a result of the herniation (pushing forward) of fat located in these areas above the eye. Upper eyelid blepharoplasty is commonly performed at the same time as lower eyelid blepharoplasty. Upper eyelid blepharoplasty does not correct crow's feet, eliminate dark circles under your eyes, or lift sagging eyebrows.
Lower eyelid blepharoplasty is one of the least traumatic procedures for someone to undergo. Lower eyelid blepharoplasty is a procedure performed to improve the appearance of the lower eyelids, which is the anatomic area that extends from the lower lid eyelashes to the bony rim of the eye socket.
If there is a herniation of fat present, there are two different surgical approaches to remove the fat. The more common technique utilizes an inconspicuous incision that runs just beneath the lash line. An alternative is to enter the fat pockets through an incision made in the inner lining of the lower eyelid. If excess skin needs to be removed, this can only be accomplished through an external approach. The procedure is long lasting and usually never has to be repeated.
The refraction portion of the eye exam is performed to determine if glasses, or a change in your current spectacle correction, will provide the best possible vision of the eye. A written prescription is given if this would be helpful in improving an individual’s visual acuity level. Please be aware that most insurance plans, including Medicare, do not cover this portion of the eye examination. If you have a separate Vision Plan that covers routine eye examinations, please let us know since it may assist you with your eye care needs that are not covered by your medical plan.
You might benefit from eyelid surgery or blepharoplasty if:
- Your upper eyelids appear hooded
- It's become increasingly difficult to put on eye makeup
- Even after you've had a good night's sleep people ask you if you're tired
- You have puffiness under your eyes that never goes away
- You are developing bulges in the corners of your upper eyelids
- You have trouble keeping your eyes open
- Your upper eyelids always feel heavy
- Your eyes appear to have become smaller
- Your eye makeup smudges very easily
- You've lost the fold of your upper eyelid
- Your peripheral vision is decreased
- You have excess skin and crepe like wrinkles beneath your eyes
- Ever since you can remember you've had baggy eyes
The surgery is usually performed on an outpatient basis and can take one to three hours. The incisions are closed with fine sutures. Swelling, bruising, and blurry vision are common after blepharoplasty. Stitches are removed three to five days after surgery, except in the case of transconjunctival blepharoplasty, where the self-dissolving sutures require no removal.
Possible complications associated with blepharoplasty include bleeding and swelling, delayed healing, infection, drooping of the upper or lower eyelid, asymmetry, double vision, and dry eye, to name a few. It is important to note that the puffiness of the fat pockets may not return, but normal wrinkling and aging of the eye area will continue.