Eyelid Lift Part 1
Author: Jonathan Pontell, MD
Medically Reviewed On: November 17, 2009
It has been said that the eyes are the windows to the soul. Whether or not this is true, the eyes are certainly one of the major focal points of the face. Changes caused by aging can lead to a tired, unrested appearance and detract from the beauty of the eyes. Blepharoplasty, or “eyelid lifts”, as they are more commonly called, can result in a more refreshed, well-rested, youthful appearance.
As we age, eyelid skin tends to sag and fatty tissues around the eye begin to bulge, causing bags under the eyes. As the eyelid muscle thickens, ridges and creases develop around the eyes as well. Eyelid lifts are usually performed for cosmetic reasons, but occasionally the upper eyelid skin becomes so droopy that it obstructs vision and in these cases, eyelid surgery is done to correct this problem.
As a cosmetic surgeon, I perform countless eyelid surgeries. Below, I describe the process of getting an eyelid lift, from the initial decision to get the surgery, through the recovery process.
Anyone considering an eyelid lift should see a board certified surgeon from one of the following surgical specialties: facial plastic surgery, otolaryngology/head and neck surgery, ophthalmology, or general plastic surgery. The surgeon should have extensive training and experience with eyelid surgery, and it is advisable to request to see examples of before-and-after photographs of the surgeon’s work. It is also a good idea to speak with some of the surgeon’s prior patients. Doing your homework before you decide to go ahead with the procedure will help ensure that you receive the best care possible.
Assessing patient goals
The consultation gives the surgeon an opportunity to listen to the patient describe his or her goals. As a surgeon, I want to know that the patient has thoroughly examined his or her own reasons for wanting the surgery, and I want to make sure that the patient has realistic expectations.
Eye assessment and surgical plan
The consultation also includes an eye examination, and the development of a surgical plan. I ask about the patient’s general health and then about any problems with the eyes such as dry eyes or visual problems. During the exam, I test visual acuity, eye movements and tear production.