Eyelid Surgery – Blepharoplasty
Eyelid Surgery (Blepharoplasty) in OKC
Over time, the tone and shape of your eyelids can change, imparting an appearance of loose extra skin or extra puffiness. Aging, genetics, sun exposure, and other conditions contribute to this change and can make you appear older or more tired than you are. In some cases, sagging upper eyelid skin can be severe enough to interfere with your vision. In either case, eyelid surgery, or blepharoplasty, with one of the oculoplastic surgeons at the Dean McGee Eye Institute (DMEI) can be a solution.
What Is Blepharoplasty?
Blepharoplasty (from the Greek blepharo = eyelid + plasty = to change) is an outpatient surgical procedure that is performed to improve the function and appearance of the eyelids. Excess skin is removed and bulging fat is eliminated or repositioned to give the eyes a more youthful appearance. If the sagging upper eyelid skin obstructs your vision, blepharoplasty can also expand the field of view – a procedure typically covered by insurance.
Upper eyelid blepharoplasty typically involves an incision hidden in the natural eyelid crease with the removal of excess skin and conservative removal of excess fat. Our surgeons keep in mind, however, that some fat is desirable to maintain a natural appearance.
An upper blepharoplasty can often be combined with a lower blepharoplasty if indicated. Certain types of brow lifts and ptosis repair can be combined in conjunction with blepharoplasty to achieve a greater increase in peripheral vision as well as an overall brighter appearance. In certain situations, the same blepharoplasty incision can be used to address all of these issues.
Upper blepharoplasty may be covered by health insurance if the excess upper eyelid skin is covering or displacing your eyelashes and interfering with your peripheral vision. In this case, upper blepharoplasty is considered medically necessary. The oculoplastic surgeons at the Dean McGee Eye Institute will evaluate you to determine if your surgery is eligible for insurance coverage. Call 405.271.1096 or 800.787.9018 today to schedule your consultation.
Lower Eyelid Blepharoplasty
Lower eyelid blepharoplasty is performed to improve the appearance of the lower eyelids and is considered a cosmetic procedure. This may involve a combination of horizontal eyelid tightening, skin removal or resurfacing, and fat removal or fat repositioning. Each surgery is tailored to an individual patient’s eyelids and cosmetic complaints. Most patients desire improvement of the bagginess or puffiness of the lower lids.
For patients with little excess skin on the lower eyelid, an incision is usually made inside the eyelid in order to remove or reposition the excess fat. For older patients, or those with significant excess skin, an additional incision may be made below the eyelashes, which facilitates excising the extra skin. An alternative to incisional skin removal is full field laser resurfacing, which uniformly tightens the skin without an external incision.
Other treatment options available from Dean McGee Eye Institute that can be used as an alternative to, or in conjunction with, lower eyelid blepharoplasty are dermal fillers, botulinum toxin, and BroadBand Light™ (BBL) therapy. The oculoplastic surgeons at the Dean McGee Eye Institute can discuss with you all the options available. Schedule an evaluation by calling 405.271.1096 or 800.787.9018.
Are There Any Risks with Eyelid Surgery?
Your surgeon will discuss with you the main risks associated with eyelid surgery, including bleeding, visible scarring, infection, and need for revision. The eyelids are delicate structures dedicated to protecting the eye, so one additional surgical risk includes choosing a provider who is not well versed in eyelid surgery.
Outdated techniques, a one-size-fits-all approach, removing too much fat, or unanticipated issues related to wound healing are just some of the reasons that blepharoplasty may result in an undesired outcome. When errors are made, the outcome can range from an unnatural appearance to the inability to the close the eyes, which may negatively impact your eye health and vision and create additional discomfort and pain.
When choosing a surgeon to perform your eyelid surgery, look for one who specializes in the anatomy and structure of the eyelids, and has extensive experience in performing blepharoplasty. You can significantly reduce the risks associated with eyelid surgery by calling 405.271.1096 or 800.787.9018 and choosing to have your surgery performed by an oculoplastic surgeon at the Dean McGee Eye Institute.
Recovery from Eyelid Surgery
Typically, blepharoplasty is an outpatient procedure performed under local anesthesia with or without intravenous sedation. Surgery typically lasts 30 minutes but may extend up to two hours depending on factors including the complexity of the case and whether or not other procedures are being conducted at the same time.
You will be given specific care instructions after surgery, but most patients should plan to be off work for three to five days and you should expect bruising and swelling that will improve over one to two weeks. Ice packs are recommended to help decrease the initial swelling and blurry vision may occur temporarily due to antibiotic ointment used on the surgical incisions. You will have a follow-up visit with your surgeon seven to 10 days after surgery to assess the healing process. Some of these post-operative evaluations may be done via telemedicine. Your surgeon will give direction on when you can resume using makeup or wearing contact lenses.
Eyelid Surgery at the Dean McGee Eye Institute
Blepharoplasty can help you face life with renewed confidence. Trust the look of your eyes to the eye experts at the Dean McGee Eye Institute, the only nationally-ranked eye institute in the state. Learn more about our oculoplastic surgeons by browsing our online physician directory or call 405.271.1096 or 800.787.9018 to schedule your evaluation today.