Washington Univesity Facial Plastic Surgery Center
Washington Univesity Facial Plastic Surgery Center
Eyelid Surgery
The changes to our face as we age can be helped by skin care and cosmetics, but not entirely hidden.


One of the most noticeable changes in our face occurs around our eyes. The eyelid skin stretches, muscles weaken, and fat begins to accumulate around the eyes. It doesn’t matter if you are a man or woman, catching up on your sleep cannot remove the sagging and droopy eyelids that come from overexposure to the sun and smoking or the effects of gravity and getting older.

Eyelid surgery, also known as blepharoplasty, is a technique used to correct the drooping upper lids and puffy bags below the eyes that can make you look older and more tired than you feel. It can be performed on the upper and/or lower eye lids.

It is considered an elective surgery, so it is not covered under health insurance, except in documented cases of ptosis. In the event of ptosis, blepharoplasty can improve eyesight compromised by heavy, drooping, upper lids. However, to qualify for insurance coverage for ptosis you must see an ophthalmologist (eye specialist) and have a special vision test performed to determine the medical problem.

Blepharoplasty should enhance your appearance by turning back the hands of time, while not drastically changing your natural appearance.

For a younger, more refreshed appearance the excess fat can be removed and the skin and muscle of the upper and lower eyelids repositioned to give you a firmer and more contoured appearance.

Procedures for eyelid surgery can vary from surgeon to surgeon. The best technique is the one that has long-lasting effects and doesn’t alter the shape of your eye.

Everyone’s eyes have differences including the shape, the surrounding muscles, tendons and bony support. The right technique for you can be determined after a comprehensive examination and consultation by a qualified physician. Our surgeons are careful to use procedures that will not reposition the eyes or change their shape. The wrong technique can leave you with scarring, a rounding of the corner of the eye or eyelids that will not function properly.

Likewise, you don’t want to pay for blepharoplasty surgery and have only excess skin removed, without resuspending the supporting tissue and muscle back in place -- which provides the long lasting result.

What to Expect with Eyelid Surgery
Incisions are made in the natural creases or folds of the eyelids. Loose skin and extra fat tissue are removed. The eyelid muscles and supporting tissue are tightened and repositioned, then the incision is stitched closed.

Stitches are removed from four-to-seven days following surgery. Bruising usually reaches its peak within the first week. For some patients, using an incision on the undersurface of the lower eyelid can avoid external incisions.

Most patients feel comfortable resuming work and social activities within ten days for upper eyelid surgery and even less time for lower lid surgery. Within a few weeks, the thin surgical scars will become less visible and gradually blend into your eyes' natural lines.

A short time after eyelid surgery you will be able to resume wearing makeup and contact lenses. Eventually, the incisions will fade to a thin, nearly invisible line. The more alert and youthful look usually lasts for years. These results are permanent for many people.

Upper eyelid surgery can be performed in the physician’s office, but lower eyelid surgery is usually performed in a surgery center on an out-patient basis. The time required to be off-work for eyelid surgery is normally seven to ten days.

Though eyelid surgery is often performed as a single procedure, it can also be performed along with a facelift or with other enhancing facial procedures. Most often it is combined with a brow lift for a complete upper facial rejuvenation that encompasses the forehead and upper and lower eyelids.
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Photo Gallery
Photo Gallery
View our photo gallery of common procedures here.
Radio Interview
Radio Interview
Featuring Dr. Gregory Branham discussing 'Facial Cosmetic Enhancements' with Donna Linn at Showmetalkradio.com Just click to listen or download..