Blepharoplasty removes the signs of ageing that weigh the eyelids down and improves the cosmetic defects that give the eyes a tired or puffed up appearance.
Eyelid surgery permanently corrects two sorts of problems that coexist to varying degrees and give the eyes a sad and tired look.
Excess skin, which may be quite loose and makes the eyes look heavy, is a direct and natural consequence of ageing.
Droopy eyelids are usually visible from 40 – 45 years of age. It is mainly the movable and firm upper eyelid which begins to show signs of weakness and hangs over the eye, forming something that looks like a small cap, with a drooping eyebrow tail. In this specific case, the surgeon can combine blepharoplasty and a temporal lift.
Sagging skin also affects the lower eyelid, but in less a pronounced way.
If necessary, the doctor will also treat other eye imperfections such as wrinkles around the eyes or dark circles.
Most of the time, small fatty deposits manifest in the form of bags under the eyes. They can appear very early, from 20-25 years of age, and seem more pronounced under certain circumstances (fatigue, alcohol, tobacco, etc.). A small hard ball of fat in the form of a hernia may also form at the upper inner corner of the eye, near the bridge of the nose. Only eyelid surgery will remove the fat permanently.
How the procedure works
Blepharoplasty is carried out under local or general anaesthetic, with or without hospitalisation, according to the patient’s wishes and the surgeon’s recommendations.
It lasts between half an hour to an hour depending on whether the practitioner operates on two or four eyelids.
Technique with scars
This is the method chosen in the case of sagging skin alone or combined with fat pads (bags under the eyes or a hernia). The surgeon first removes the fat, then the excess skin and tissues that are under the skin to keep a small strip of muscle. He then redrapes the skin to smooth the crow’s feet wrinkles or the small fine lines under the eyes.
Incision at the top
It is made in the crease of the eyelid and extends 1 to 2 centimetres towards the temple to disappear into a little wrinkle of one of the crow’s feet. The surgeon adjusts the incision to the shape of the eye so that the scarring is completely hidden and so as not to change the shape of the look.
Incision at the bottom
It is made along the line of the eyelashes and is extends 1 to 2 centimetres towards the crow’s feet. The surgeon can also access the pockets of fat by this access channel.
He cauterises the blood vessels to minimise the risk of bruising.
Then he does the sutures with a very thin absorbable suture which passes under the skin from each end of the scar to be easily removed. He then sticks mini-adhesive plasters to the ends of the sutures to keep them in place. The sutures are removed on the fifth day.
Technique without scar
If he is only treating bags under the eyes without significant sagging skin, the practitioner chooses the conjunctival route which allows him to hide the incision in the inner lining of the eyelid. In this case, no external scars will be visible. By pressing the eye, he brings out the balls of fat and thus reduces the puffed up appearance.
At the end of the procedure, the surgeon places dressings soaked with a cold physiological saline solution on the eyes to reduce the risk of oedema and bruising.
After the procedure
Blepharoplasty is a painless procedure. Taking simple painkillers is sufficient in case of tension in the eyelids.
In the first days, the eyes may be more sensitive to the light and weep more. That is why it is advisable to wear sunglasses. Most people can resume their usual activities (reading, driving, etc.) after 48 hours. Women can wear small amounts of makeup from the eighth day.
There is oedema and bruising which are usually absorbed after ten days. The significance of the bruising varies from person to person. The patient can usually return to work after one week, which is the time it takes to be socially presentable. The patient can play sports again after two to three weeks.
The scars are red and then pink for a few weeks. They gradually fade and become very thin and white after one year. Exposure to the sun without protection must be avoided in order to prevent the scars from becoming brown under the ultraviolet action.
The person’s look appears to be more rested and the person is made to look ten years younger. The result will be optimum three to six months after the procedure when the skin tissues have regained their flexibility.
The benefit of blepharoplasty is permanent for the bags under the eyes because they will never reappear. It lasts about ten years for sagging skin, when the effects of ageing will be visible again.
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