Eyelid Surgery (Blepharoplasty)
Blepharoplasty (BLEF-uh-roe-plas-tee) is a type of surgery that repairs droopy eyelids and may involve removing excess skin, muscle and fat. As you age, your eyelids stretch, and the muscles supporting them weaken. As a result, excess fat may gather above and below your eyelids, causing sagging eyebrows, droopy upper lids and bags under your eyes.
Besides making you look older, severely sagging skin around your eyes can reduce your side vision (peripheral vision), especially the upper and outer parts of your field of vision. Blepharoplasty can reduce or eliminate these vision problems and make your eyes appear younger and more alert.
This surgery is usually done for cosmetic reasons. It's also an effective way to improve sight in older people whose sagging upper eyelids get in the way of their vision.
Risks of Eyelid Surgery
Possible risks of eyelid surgery include:
- Infection and bleeding
- Dry, irritated eyes
- Difficulty closing your eyes or other eyelid problems
- Noticeable scarring
- Injury to eye muscles
- Skin discoloration
- The need for a follow-up surgery
- Temporarily blurred vision or, rarely, loss of eyesight
- Risks associated with surgery in general, including reaction to anesthesia and blood clots
Why is eyelid surgery performed?
Upper eyelid excess skin and fat can create a heavy looking eyelid, aged appearance, puffiness, and sometimes block the upper field of vision. Upper blepharoplasty is performed to remove excess skin and fat and can improve the field of vision.
Double eyelid surgery, also called Asian eyelid surgery, is performed to create or enhance an upper eyelid crease. This type of surgery is performed on Asian people to "westernize" the appearance of the eyelid.
Lower blepharoplasty can be performed to remove excess skin and improve the contour of the eyelid by adding or removing fat. Sometimes tightening the eyelid is needed to correct sagging, while laser skin resurfacing can be used to improve wrinkles and skin texture.