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Prischmann Facial Plastic Surgery
5201 Eden Avenue, Suite 170
Edina, MN 55436
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Eyelid Surgery

Eyelid lift, or blepharoplasty, can refer to the upper or lower eyelid.

Upper Eyelid Blepharoplasty

Who is a good candidate?

  • Loose or excess skin of the upper eyelid
  • Puffiness of the upper eyelid
  • Reasonable expectations

The best candidates are healthy and don’t have active eye problems.

How is the surgery performed?

Upper eyelid lift is performed in an operating room under mild sedation. The procedure takes 30-45 minutes. The incisions are planned to remove excess skin and heal in the natural eyelid crease. Stitches are placed on the outside and removed on day 5 to 7 after surgery.

What is the recovery?

There are two types of downtime associated with upper eyelid lift: overall downtime and “visual” downtime. Overall downtime (time away from work) is about 5-7 days. You will have bruising and swelling for a couple of weeks after surgery. Visual downtime refers to the time that you can expect your vision to be blurry. This is about one week after surgery, but can be longer. In most cases, you can expect to resume wearing contacts and eye makeup in 2-3 weeks.

The recovery times can be longer if the upper and lower eyelids are performed at the same time.

Lower Eyelid Blepharoplasty

There are two main approaches for lower eyelid lift. In young patients, or patients with puffy eyelids only, the surgery is performed on the inside of the eyelid (called “the transconjunctival approach”).

In older patients, or patients with loose skin of the lower eyelid, the surgery is performed with a small incision underneath the lashline.

Who is a good candidate?

  • Loose or excess skin of the lower eyelid
  • Puffy appearance to the lower eyelid
  • Do not have problems with dry eyes
  • Can be away from computer work or texting for at least one week after surgery
  • Reasonable expectations

The best candidates are healthy and don’t have active eye problems.

How is the surgery performed?

Similar to upper eyelid lift, lower eyelid surgery is performed in an operating room under mild sedation. During your consultation, Dr. Prischmann will determine which surgical approach will give you the best results. The procedure takes about 45-60 minutes.

The transconjunctival approach is performed entirely through a small incision on the inside of the eyelid. This approach is best suited for patients who only need correction of puffiness and herniating fat. Usually, sutures are not necessary.

The external approach is performed through a small incision under the lashline. This approach is best suited for patients who have excess skin and/or puffiness. One or two internal sutures are placed. External sutures are removed in 7 days.

What is the recovery?

There are two types of downtime associated with lower eyelid lift: overall downtime and “visual” downtime. It is important to note that recovery following the transconjunctival approach is usually quicker than the external approach. Overall downtime (time away from work) is about 10-14 days. You will have bruising and swelling for about 3-4 weeks. Visual downtime refers to the time that you can expect your vision to be blurry. This is about two weeks after surgery, but can be up to six weeks. Visual downtime after lower eyelid lift will affect computer use and texting ability.

 

More Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

For your convenience, Dr. Jess Prischmann, our Minneapolis facial plastic surgeon, has provided some answers to frequently asked questions about eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty). If you have additional questions, or if you would like to schedule a consultation, please contact us today.

I have an unevenness in my eyes. What could have caused this asymmetry in the eye area?

No human face is perfectly symmetric. Often, we don’t realize this until we start the process of thinking about surgery. Many times, an eyelid lift can improve the appearance of asymmetry (for example, if one eyelid is more hooded than the other). Other times, it does not change it at all. Your surgeon should be able to set appropriate expectations prior to surgery.

Will my insurance cover my blepharoplasty?

Blepharoplasty can be covered by your insurance company if there is a functional problem. In other words, if the sagging skin of your upper eyelid is blocking your peripheral vision.

We very commonly refer our patients for visual field testing. In this very simple and quick test, we can numerically measure the degree of peripheral obstruction. After reviewing the test results, we can advise whether insurance is likely to provide coverage or if we need to submit for a “prior authorization” from your insurance carrier.

How can I avoid looking hollow following fat pad removal for my lower eyelids?

It is important to be conservative with fat pad removal when performing surgery for lower eyelid bags. This is something Dr. Prischmann discusses with her patients during consultation for lower eyelid surgery.

Can you remove loose skin of the lower eyelid?

Yes, loose skin of the lower eyelid can be treated either with surgery or resurfacing techniques (chemical or laser peels). If the skin of the lower eyelid has very fine lines or mild inelasticity, we tend to advise resurfacing techniques first. If the lower eyelid has more significant loose skin, then surgery will likely be the best option.

How important is aftercare following eyelid surgery?

Aftercare is critically important following eyelid surgery. We teach our patients how to care for incisions to ensure the best result. We also have a very elaborate protocol for lubricating the eyes during the first few weeks after surgery to prevent complications associated with dry eye symptoms.

Schedule a Consultation with Dr. Prischmann

Dr. Prischmann can answer all of your questions and address any concerns you may have during an initial consultation to discuss your goals. If you would like more information on eyelid surgery, please contact us today.