Blepharoplasty

What is Blepharoplasty?

Blepharoplasty (pronounced blef ‘ah-ro-plas-tee) is a type of plastic surgery that your ophthalmologist can perform on the upper and lower eyelids to remove excess skin and fat from around the eyes. Sagging eyebrows or weak eyelid muscles (ptosis) may be corrected at the same time.

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It is wise to consult and ophthalmologist when considering this procedure. Blepharoplasty is done to improve visual function and/or cosmetic appearance. Excessive upper eyelid tissue can block the upper part of the visual field. This can be determined by lifting the upper lids with your fingers to see if the upper visual field improves or vision brightens. A formal visual field test may be helpful in this situation.

Heavy eye lids can make you feel fatigued and cause headaches from constant lifting of the forehead muscles. An excessive number of wrinkled skin folds above the eyes can produce a sagging, tired look which detracts from one’s general appearance. In this situation, blepharoplasty may be considered for cosmetic reasons, even though vision is not affected. Cosmetic eyelid surgery is one of the most common plastic surgery operations performed by ophthalmologists.

How is eyelid surgery performed?

After the amount of skin and fat to be removed has been determined, upper and lower incision lines are marked along natural skin creases. Incision lines generally extend into the “crow’s feet” or “smile lines” at the outer edge of the eye, so that once healed, the incision lines are less visible. Upper blepharoplasty incisions are performed with a blade and fat removal is done with the CO2 laser to decrease the amount of bleeding and bruising. The procedure is performed with local anesthesia in our office surgical suite.

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