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The best candidates for eyelid surgery are men and women of essentially any age that have started to notice excess upper or lower eyelid skin and “bags” under the eyes. Some patients notice this early in life, some later. Importantly, eyelid surgery candidates should be otherwise fairly healthy and without major eye problems. Any pre-existing eye problems like dry eyes or glaucoma should be reviewed with Dr. Lewis before surgery. Occasionally, upper eyelid surgery can be performed with insurance approval. In order for insurance to approve eyelid surgery you must have a true, demonstrable, functional problem such as interference with your vision. Please discuss any functional concerns you may have with Dr. Lewis at your appointment.
As Dr. Lewis states,
“The eyes are the initial focus of every conversation you have. Having a more youthful, rested appearance starts with sculpting and refining the eyelid appearance.”
Every procedure is tailored to your individual anatomy. Eyebrow position directly influences eyelid appearance and that influence will be discussed at your appointment. You may be a candidate for eyebrow surgery in addition to or exclusive of eyelid surgery. Not all upper eyelid procedures are the same. Surgery around the eyes is delicate and requires precise attention to detail. Dr. Lewis’ fellowship in Aesthetic Surgery affords him a unique perspective by which to give you the attention to detail you deserve. Typically, incisions are made within the upper eyelid skin crease or adjacent to the lower eyelash line. Excess fat is removed or repositioned to create the desired affect. Excess skin is excised and incisions are closed precisely. Often times, with the lower eyelid incisions can be made within the conjunctiva so there is no visible scarring in the skin. Each procedure is individualized for a particular patient. Again, eyelid procedures can be performed alone or in combination with other facial aesthetic surgery. Eyelid procedures alone can most often be performed with IV sedation anesthesia alone. Combination procedures usually require general anesthesia.
What to Expect
Eyelid surgery is an outpatient procedure. Typically, eyelid surgery alone is done using local anesthesia in combination with IV sedation or twilight anesthesia. The surgery typically takes one to two hours base upon how much is being done. There is only minor discomfort with eyelid surgery. You can expect bruising and swelling that usually resolves within the first seven to 10 days after surgery. You should avoid strenuous activity for two weeks after surgery. Please discuss any return to work limitations with Dr. Lewis directly. You should be resting with your head elevated for at least the first two to three days after surgery with ice compress on your eyes. Specific written post operative instructions will be provided to you following the procedure.
Please be sure to avoid blood thinners or any aspirin containing medications before surgery. If you are taking blood thinners by prescription you need to discuss this with Dr. Lewis and you will need specific permission from your prescribing physician to discontinue those medications around the time of surgery. Make sure you have a ride to and from the surgery center. Also, make sure all of your immediate work and responsibilities at home are taken care of so that you can concentrate on your recovery stress free. You will meet with Dr. Lewis at least twice before surgery and several times postoperatively.
Questions are always welcome.
After a few days, swelling should subside and the stitches will be removed by the fifth or sixth day after surgery. Dr. Lewis and his staff will show you how to properly cleanse your eyes and how eye drops can relieve dry, itchy or burning eyes. You might experience greater sensitivity to light and a mild blurring of your vision for several weeks. Generally, you should avoid strenuous activity for about two weeks after surgery. Return to work timing should be discussed with Dr. Lewis. Most patients can return to light normal activity within the first seven days after surgery.