Eyelid Surgery: What to expect before and after

The Consultation

Before you have your procedure, you will have a consultation with an eye doctor. During this consultation you will get to know your surgeon, ask any questions you have and all the steps of your blepharoplasty will be explained to you very carefully. During the consultation, your eye will of course be examined. A peripheral vision test may also be done. Some patients also get a brow lift done during an upper blepharoplasty to correct forehead wrinkles and to further increase your vision and the effect of the procedure. Your doctor will also discuss the after effects and recovery process for your upper or lower blepharoplasty surgery and tell you what precautions, if any, to take in the hours and days before the surgery.

The Procedure

Blepharoplasty surgery is performed under a local anesthesia with intravenous sedation to keep you comfortable. The procedure begins with the doctor marking the eyelids to show where the excess tissue will be removed. The process for the upper eyelid involves making an incision on the crease to remove the skin, fat and excess muscle. The tissues will be re‐contoured so that hooding or puffiness will no longer be a problem for you. In a lower eyelid surgery, an incision is made below the lash line to permit removal of the fat and skin.

Once the extra skin has been removed the fat is redistributed to reduce any bulging or puffiness in the area. After this reshaping takes place the incisions are closed with glue or self‐dissolving sutures (stitches) and you are moved to the recovery room.

The Recovery Period

The recovery period for upper and lower blepharoplasty surgery in minimal. You may experience some bruising or swelling for a while, but this shouldn’t last more than one or two week’s. You may also feel some numbness, more tears than normal, slight sensitivity to light or the occasional double vision. However, these effects should be minimal and can be treated with an over the counter medication like acetaminophen. You can also use ice or a cold pack to help with the swelling. Your doctor will explain how to deal with the small side effects during your consultation as well as before you go home after your blepharoplasty surgery.

Life After Surgery

In about two weeks, you should be ready to return to a normal life. You might need to use eye drops during those two weeks to keep the eyes lubricated and you may also need to avoid reading and any other activities that might use the eyes. This will be something you will need to test for yourself. You may have difficulty focusing when reading one night after your surgery, wake up and be able to read perfectly. Any side effects you do experience won’t last long.

There are a few other best practices you may want to keep in mind.Keep your head elevated as much as possible, reclining rather than lying flat when sleeping. Avoid vigorous exercise for a while as a rise in your blood pressure could increase the swelling. You should also wear sunglasses as much as possible to protect your eyes from the sun and wind. Also, ladies should wait 2‐3 weeks after undergoing Blepharoplasty surgery before wearing makeup. The makeup can be irritating and the brushes and the removers contain bacteria. So, to avoid the risk, no makeup until the incisions has completely healed.

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