Eyelid Surgery – Blepharoplasty
Cosmetic eye surgery, also known as Blepharoplasty, enhances the appearance of the upper eyelids and lower eyelids. Every year, hundreds of thousands of men and women choose to have cosmetic surgery performed to reduce signs of aging around the eyes. Since the eyes communicate a lot about a person and are one of the first features people notice when meeting someone, droopy or swollen eyes indicate that you are not reflecting your vivacious inner self.
Droopy eyelids impair your vision and cause you to look sleepy, and puffy bags under your eyes make you look worn and tired. Both make you look older than how you really want to look. While this surgery cannot erase the aging process around the eyes, blepharoplasty, performed by double board-certified facial plastic surgeon and leading expert in facial rejuvenation, Dr. Philip Miller, can restore an energetic look to your eyes in Manhattan, New York.
While special creams and serums help reduce the look of puffy, tired eyes, a lower eyelid procedure is the best remedy to alleviate persistent under-eye bags. By making a small incision below the lower lashes or inside the lower eyelid, the excess fat, skin, and water that has accumulated under the eyes through the years are removed, and the skin is tightened. The goal of lower blepharoplasty is to restore the smoothness, tone, and tautness of your eyes, giving them a youthful, healthy appearance.
Upper eyelid surgery is commonly referred to as an “eye lift.” This surgery is performed to remove the extra skin, fat, and loose muscle that weighs down the upper eyelids, causing them to droop. While some of the fat will be redistributed to allow the eyelids to retain their natural look, the majority of the excess fat and skin is removed. The remaining skin is then tightened to give the eyes a more alert appearance. Very fine sutures are used to eliminate the visibility of scarring. To learn more about blepharoplasty, visit medlineplus.gov
Blepharoplasty: The Recovery Process
Usually, there is no need for an overnight stay at our New York City center when having a blepharoplasty done. This type of procedure usually lasts between 1 and 2 hours but can vary based on complications and the number of procedures being done in conjunction with the blepharoplasty.
Recovery from eyelid surgery is complete within seven to ten days. A small amount of lumpiness is usual at the corners of the eyes. Minimal blurry vision rapidly resolves. Sunglasses allow you to go out in public immediately after surgery, and makeup can be worn within five days. Normal activity and exercise can resume three weeks after surgery.
Reasons to Undergo Eyelid Surgery in NYC
As we age, everything begins to sag. The eyes are particularly vulnerable to signs of aging because they develop extra skin and fat. Trimming this “extra” skin from your upper and lower eyelids will restore your eyes’ youthful contour, improve your appearance, and give your self-confidence a boost.
Patients also choose to undergo eyelid surgery to address the following issues:
- Extra skin concealing the natural fold of the upper eyelids
- Impaired vision from sagging skin hanging from the upper eyelids
- Puffy upper eyelids
- Bags and dark circles under the eyes
- Fine wrinkles under the lower eyelids
- Drooping lower eyelids that show the white below the iris
Benefits of NYC Blepharoplasty
Blepharoplasty can offer both functional and cosmetic benefits. These include:
- Removal of dark under-eye circles and under-eye bags
- Reduced fine lines on lower eyelids and outer corners of the eyes
- Natural, rested, and more youthful appearance
- Enhanced eye contours
- Improved vision
- Reduced skin irritation from excess folds rubbing together
- Reduced forehead discomfort from muscle straining
Before and After Blepharoplasty Photos
*Patient results may vary
What to Expect During a Blepharoplasty in Manhattan
Blepharoplasty patients should consult with their surgeon for both pre- and post-operation requirements. In some cases, your doctor may not want you to eat or drink prior to the operation.
Surgery can be done separately on either the upper or lower eyelids, at the same time on both the upper and lower eyelids, or with a face, neck, eyebrow, or forehead lift. If both the upper and lower lids are being done, the surgery can take up to three hours.
During an upper eyelid procedure, incisions are made in the crease of the upper eyelid to remove the excess fat. During a lower eyelid procedure, an incision is made on the inside of the eyelid beneath the lashes or behind the lower eyelid. The lower eyelid fat is then removed through the incision. The incisions are unnoticeable after they have healed because fine sutures are used to stitch the skin and are removed five days later. Scarring is not visible because of where the incisions are made.
A cosmetic eyelid procedure is performed similarly to dental surgery in that you will be injected with an anesthetic to numb the surgical area and be given an oral or intravenous sedative. The anesthetic or sedative will not put you to sleep, but it will help you relax and eliminate any feeling of pain. Since you are not unconscious, you may feel some pressure sensation.
Preparing for Eyelid Surgery
Before surgery, your surgeon will ask about your medical history and your expectations. Depending on the goal of the surgery, you may be given a physical exam, a vision exam, and your eyes may also be photographed from different angles to help plan the procedure.
Your surgeon will provide you with pre-operative instructions. These include:
- Stop smoking at least two weeks before surgery (smoking can reduce your ability to heal).
- Stop taking aspirin, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDs), and other medications that can increase bleeding two weeks before surgery.
- Avoid sun damage two weeks before surgery (wear sunscreen with a minimum SPF of 30).
- Do not eat or drink anything (including water) after midnight the night before your surgery (unless otherwise directed by your doctor).
- Arrange for someone to drive you to and from surgery and to look after you during the first few days of recovery.
The Recovery Process
After surgery, your doctor may apply bandages in the eye area to absorb any residual bleeding and an ointment to keep your eyes lubricated. You will feel drowsy from the anesthesia, and your vision will be blurry. It is important that you have someone drive you home after surgery and stay with you a few days to provide you some assistance while your eyelids heal. Expect some bruising and swelling after surgery as this is the body’s natural way of healing itself.
Mild pain medication will be prescribed to ease the tenderness and discomfort. After the blurry vision and lumpiness around the corners of the eyes clear up, you may wear sunglasses or apply make-up to go out in public. If it is utterly necessary to go out in public after you get home from surgery, simply wear a pair of sunglasses.
Total recovery normally takes between seven to ten days; however, because people heal at different rates, allow two weeks for all bruising and swelling to go away. Additionally, avoid activities that require too much physical exertion for at least one week after surgery. Activities such as reading, watching television, and working on the computer are acceptable after a day or two.
However, if you wear contact lenses, avoid wearing them for at least one week. If you exercise, wait at least two to three weeks before resuming your workout regimen. If you work, plan to be out of work for at least one week.
Following the post-surgery instructions will assist you in achieving the best results. Familiarize yourself with the list of instructions, and post them in a visible place in your house. Also, give a copy of the instructions to the person helping you after surgery.
Instructions will include:
- Keeping your head elevated
- Using a cold compress to reduce swelling and bruising
- Keeping your eyes clean
Candidates for a Blepharoplasty in New York City
Good candidates for blepharoplasty include:
- Healthy individuals with no serious eye conditions
- Individuals with realistic goals
During your consultation with Dr. Philip Miller in his New York, Manhattan office, we will discuss with you some other options that will enhance your eyes such as an endoscopic eyebrow lift procedure or a forehead lift. Both procedures improve the height and maintain the contour of the upper eyebrow, giving your face a more youthful appearance.
Q: How much does surgery cost?
A: The cost for a cosmetic eyelid procedure varies, and also depends on the cost of medical exams, anesthesia, hospital or operating room facilities, consultation, prescriptions for medications, surgical experience, and the type of procedure performed. Many plastic surgeons offer financing options, so be sure to book a consultation.
Q: Who are the best candidates for this procedure?
A: If you have excessive drooping of skin around your eyes due to eye allergies, edema, or genetics, this is a surgery you may want to consider. If you are interested strictly for cosmetic reasons, it is important to know that surgery will not eliminate the normal eye aging process, but it will make you feel more confident about your appearance. Candidates are typically between the ages of 18 and 65 and are in good mental and physical health. If you have certain medical conditions such as a detached retina, Graves’ disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, or glaucoma, check with your ophthalmologist before you see a blepharoplasty surgeon.
Q: How long will my results last?
A: As with any cosmetic procedure, the enhancements will not last forever. Typically, this procedure lasts between 5 and 10 years, depending on your health and other factors. At some point in the future, if your lids sag again and you desire a follow-up surgery, your plastic surgeon may suggest a forehead lift rather than another eyelid procedure.
Q: What are the risks of eyelid surgery?
A: Complications are rare and generally minimal. As with any type of surgery, there is a small risk of infection and minor post-surgery bleeding. Some patients have reported that after surgery, vision is temporarily blurred or double-vision arises, but these issues disappear after a few days. Also, minor swelling around the corners of the eyelids is temporary and typical of the healing process.
Patients may notice that one eye heals faster than the other, but this is nothing to be alarmed about. Patients may notice tiny whiteheads form after the stitches are removed, but this is also normal and can be removed by your surgeon. In very rare cases, patients may experience difficulty closing their eyes when they sleep, requiring additional surgery to be performed to alleviate this situation. How fast you heal from surgery also depends on how well you follow your post-operation instructions.
Schedule a Blepharoplasty Consultation for an Eyelid Surgery in New York
To schedule a blepharoplasty consultation with Dr. Philip Miller in New York, Manhattan, feel free to contact us through our consultation form.
Next, learn about forehead lift.
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Facial Plastic Surgery
Dr. Philip Miller and his team of New York's top rated facial plastic surgery experts provide custom cosmetic treatment plans that include a combination of minimally-invasive techniques and advanced procedures, to help each patient achieve the Aesthetic Confidence® they desire. Our unique NatraFace™ approach to facial rejuvenation includes the following effective procedures:
Eyelid Plastic Surgery
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Widely acclaimed for our broad range of flawless skincare solutions, Philip J. Miller, MD, FACS and his team of aesthetic specialists offer customized skincare treatment plans to achieve healthy, natural-looking results. As part of our NatraLook™ process, the following procedures may be performed individually or in combination with more advanced surgical treatments for optimal rejuvenation.
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