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All About Eyelid Surgery

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Eyelid surgery is a procedure to remove excess skin from upper eyelids and reduce bagginess in the lower eyelids. This is typically performed as a cosmetic surgery, but may be performed in older patients if sagging eyelids have interfered with their vision. Sometimes, eyelid surgery is performed along with other procedures, such as laser resurfacing and forehead lifts.

Why do eyelids sag? 

Your skin loses elasticity with age. This can result in excess skin on the eyelids, as well as bulges and wrinkles.

How is eyelid surgery performed? 

There are several different methods for performing eyelid surgery, depending on the severity of the sagging and whether the operation is being performed on the upper or lower eyelids. For example, the procedure may be performed on the upper eyelids by cutting along the natural eyelid line, separating the skin from the underlying tissue, and removing excess skin and fat. The cuts are then closed with tiny stitches.

Am I a candidate for eyelid surgery? 

A good candidate for any cosmetic surgery will be in good health and have realistic expectations of the procedure. In general, eyelid surgery is good for improving drooping lower lids, excess skin on upper lids, loose or sagging skin, and bags under the eyes. It is important to remember that eyelid surgery will not alter facial structure and the eyes will still be subject to normal aging. While lower eyelid surgery rarely needs to be repeated, upper eyelid surgery can last for only five to seven years.

What can I expect from the procedure? 

If your doctor is operating on both upper and lower eyelids, the procedure can take about two hours. It is performed with local anesthesia. You will need to be driven home after the surgery and may experience dry eyes, swelling, and sometimes bruising. Your eyes will look normal within a week or two. Your doctor might recommend the use of ice packs, eye drops, gauze pads, and pain medication to use in the meantime at home.