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All About Eyelid Lift (Blepharoplasty)

Introduction to Eyelid Lift


Eyelid Lift, also known as Blepharoplasty, is a surgical procedure to remove overhanging skin, excess muscle, and puffy fat from the eyelids to relieve the tired look of aging eyes.  If you or your friend are considering Eyelid Lift or if you are only interested in more information about the procedure, please call us at (714) 500-0050 for a consultation with Dr. Luu Doan.  You can also email us by clicking here to schedule a consultation or to get answers to any of your questions regarding the procedure. 


As we enter the fourth decade of life, eyelid skin begins to lose its tone and elasticity through the damaging effects of sun exposure, smoking, gravity, and aging.  This is manifested in the upper eyelids by the loss of the double crease due to the overhanging skin which forms a hood over the eyes.  The lower eyelids develop multiple horizontal wrinkles with protrusion of fat pushing against the skin giving the appearance of “bags” under the eyes.  The end result is a much older and more tired appearance of the eyes, especially as the day progresses. 



The Eyelid Lift procedure rejuvenates the eyes by removing sagging skin and excess muscle to restore the double crease of the upper eyelids.  Removal of excess skin from the lower eyelids eliminates the most prominent horizontal wrinkles.  The crow’s feet creases are usually not removed.  Removal of puffy fat will eliminate the bags under the eyes.


Eyelid Lift Surgery


The Eyelid Lift surgery is an outpatient procedure performed under general anesthesia in our medicare-accredited, state-of-the-art Newport Coast Surgical Center.  The duration of the surgery is 45 minutes for the upper eyelids and 45 minutes for the lower eyelids.  The patient is monitored by an anesthesiologist throughout the procedure.


In the upper eyelids, the surgery begins with an incision along the natural skin crease above the eyelash margin called the supratarsal crease.  A crescent of skin is then removed along with underlying muscle.  If there is puffy fat in the upper eyelids, then it is also removed.  In the lower eyelids, the incision is made 2 mm below the eyelash margin.  The skin and muscle is then elevated to reveal the protruding fat which is removed in equal amounts from both eyes.  The loose skin and muscle is pulled upwards and the excess amount is carefully excised.  The skin incision is then closed with fine sutures. 


Only a thorough and candid discussion between you and Dr. Doan can determine the best options for you.  Doctor Doan will discuss with you in detail every step of the procedure and he will review with you the possible complications of the operation. 


Recovery From Eyelid Lift Surgery


You will likely feel achy pain around the eyes for several days after the surgery.  You will be prescribed medication to control the pain and nausea.  You will also be prescribed antibiotic pills to prevent infection.  Ice should be applied every 20 minutes to the eyes for the first 48 hours to minimize the degree of bruising and swelling.  The sutures will be removed at 5 to 7 days after surgery.  Most patients will be able to return to work in 5 days and will be able to return to their normal exercise routine by six weeks.  All of the bruising will be gone by two weeks.  Most of the swelling will be gone by two months.  Complete resolution of the eyelid skin swelling may take 6 months to a year.  Doctor Doan and his staff will guide you through the entire recovery period to make sure that it is as smooth as possible.


Complications of Eyelid Lift Surgery


If you are a healthy candidate with no pre-existing disorders or diseases which may inhibit healing, the general risks of Eyelid Lift surgery are very low.  However, since it is indeed surgery, there are inherent risks you must consider before choosing to undergo a procedure such as this.  Potential complications associated with Eyelid Lift may include the following:


  • Bleeding that may require immediate return to surgery to remove the blood.

  • Difficulty in completely closing the eyes which requires temporary taping of the eyes shut when sleeping to prevent dry eyes

  • Dry eyes which require artificial tears

  • Infection called conjunctivitis

  • Pulling down of the lower lids which requires eyelid massage to soften and loosen the skin

  • Slight asymmetry in healing or scarring

  • Temporary blurred or double vision

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