Eyelid Lifts, Blepharoplasty and Ptosis Repairs are common surgical procedures that can be performed in-office or at an outpatient surgical center. As Memphis’ premier oculoplastic surgeon, Dr. Linder has performed countless procedures, ranging from complex reconstructive surgeries to simple cosmetic procedures.
If your eyelids are droopy, you may have trouble seeing while reading, driving or watching TV. Sometimes droopy eyelids can even make you appear older or more tired than you really are. There are two common causes for drooping eyelids: Dermatochalasis and Ptosis.
Dermatochalasis drooping can affect the upper or lower eyelids and is due to excess eyelid skin. Dermatochalasis is generally acquired from aging, loss of elastic tissue in the skin, weakening of the connective tissue of the eyelid, effects of gravity and the degeneration of collagen. Dermatochalasis is corrected by an eyelid surgery called blepharoplasty.
Ptosis drooping is due to weakness in the muscle that is responsible for lifting the upper eyelid. Ptosis can occur in children and adults. Children with ptosis are generally born with the condition due to the muscle not developing properly prior to birth. Adults with ptosis generally acquire the condition when the muscle becomes overstretched through time. Adult ptosis is generally due to aging, excessive eye rubbing, long-term use of contact lenses or excessive, heavy skin putting weight on the muscle. Ptosis drooping is corrected by an eyelid surgery called ptosis repair.
As we age, our eyelids can look or feel “droopier.” This often has to do with fatty tissue in the eyelids—age can cause eyelid fat to shift, causing the “droop” and making us look older or tired. While many dismiss this as a cosmetic issue, keep in mind that this can impact vision by reducing peripheral vision. This can also lead to visual complaints while reading, watching TV, driving or enjoying the beautiful scenery that surrounds us.
A blepharoplasty is the procedure used to correct drooping of the upper and lower eyelids caused by dermatochalasis. A blepharoplasty is accomplished by removing excess skin and fat from the eyelids. Upper lid blepharoplasties are performed through an incision along the natural crease of the eyelid. Lower lid blepharoplasties are performed through an incision just below the lower lash line or through an incision on the inside of the lower lid.
A ptosis repair is the procedure used to correct ptosis drooping of the upper eyelids. A ptosis repair is accomplished by strengthening the muscle function that lifts the eyelid and is performed through an incision along the natural crease of the eyelid. .
Eyelid surgery can quickly and easily correct drooping eyelids and other surrounding facial issues, including under eye bags and heavy, tired looking eyes. In most cases these issues cannot be corrected long term with injectables, topicals or other treatments. The best option to lasting correction is surgery.
Recovery periods for eyelid surgeries can vary depending on the extent of the procedure. However, most patients are back to their normal activities within one week.
Side effects can vary from patient to patient. Most patients experience mild to moderate swelling for three to four days following their procedure and may be bruised for up to two weeks. Redness and bruising at the incision site are also common, as is short term blurred vision, watery eyes, light sensitivity or dryness. Patients can use cold compresses and keep their head elevated after surgery to help alleviate some of the bruising and swelling. Dr. Linder provides additional post-op instructions prior to surgery.
Sutures are removed one week after your surgery and Dr. Linder usually likes to see you again one month after surgery. Additional visits may be scheduled as needed.
Eyelid surgery takes between one and two hours depending on whether the procedure is just your upper eyelids or both upper and lower eyelids. Generally, two eyelids, either both uppers or both lowers, will take one hour to complete and all four eyelids will take two hours. The majority of eyelid surgeries are outpatient procedures, so patients can leave within one to two hours of completion.
No. Regardless of the procedure, Dr. Linder and the surgical facility will only release patients to a friend, relative or other designated driver. This person is required to drive you to surgery, wait for you in the waiting room and then drive you home. Even if you feel well enough to drive, it’s important to take precautions, especially during the first few days after your surgery.
Insurance will cover your surgery only if there is significant visual obstruction due to eyelid drooping. If your eyelid drooping is to a degree where insurance may cover the procedure, we will do the appropriate tests to prove medical necessity and submit the information to your insurance company and try to get the procedure approved for you. If your eyelids are not drooping to the point where they affect your vision, your surgery will be considered a cosmetic procedure and Dr. Linder will discuss self-pay pricing with you. Lower eyelid sagging and fat pouches are never covered by insurance and will be performed as a cosmetic procedure. Although we do not accept payment plans for our services, you can go to www.carecredit.com to apply for a healthcare credit card. You will pay us with your Care Credit card prior to your service and then pay your Care Credit bill monthly as you like.
On the day of your surgery there are two important things you must do. 1.) Do not eat or drink 8 hours prior to your surgery and 2.) Arrange transportation to and from your surgery. Your transportation must be with you at check-in, wait for you in the waiting room during your procedure, then drive you home.
Five to seven days prior to surgery you need to stop taking any aspirin products and blood thinners. If you are not on a prescription blood thinner you just make sure you don't take any products with aspirin in them. (Aspirin, Alleve, Ibuprofen, BC Powder, Fish Oil, etc. Tylenol/acetametaphine products are OK.)
If you are on prescription blood thinners, you will need a cardio clearance from the doctor who prescribes them stating that they approve you to quit the medicine five days prior to surgery or however many days they feel you are safe to be off of the medicine. Our office helps you with this. Make sure to let us know which blood thinner you take and what doctor prescribes them.
My surgery with Dr. Linder was a wonderful experience. My vision has improved very much. He and his staff are very friendly and compassionate. Thank You for everything!