The procedure | Upper eyelid blepharoplasty

Skin excess in the upper eyelids can result in a weary and sometimes saddened appearance. Tiredness is often progressive during the course of the day. Both wet as well as dry eyes can be symptoms of an impaired function of the eyelids due to the weight they have to carry. The aim of the procedure is to reduce the excess of skin in the upper eyelids while achieving a natural look, therefore reducing any functional and aesthetic complaints you might experience at the moment.

Where will I be operated?

The operation will be performed in the fully equipped operating theatre at the Radetzky villa.

What can I expect of the operation?

The operation will be performed under local anaesthetic and will take approximately 30 minutes. Your surgeon will always see you before the operation and will talk you through the steps. Pictures will be taken for documentation. The procedure will start with prepping and draping of your face. Markings will be made on your eyelids and you are advised to keep your eyes closed. You will be warned when the local anaesthetic is going to be injected and you will experience a swelling of your eyelids. While you will not feel any pain during the procedure, you will be able to experience movements, pressure or changes in temperature. Your surgeon will use a precise electric devise to stop any bleeding that may occur and will use one suture to close the wound.

What are the risks?

Blepharoplasty is considered to be a low risk procedure. The most common complication is an increase (either subjective or objective) in frequency of dryness of the eyes. Postoperative bleeding occurs in less then 1 in 100 cases. If this occurs behind the eyeball it may compromise vision. Even though this is extremely rare (only 1:40.000), you are advised to contact your surgeon if you experience impaired vision in the days after surgery.

What can I expect after the operation?

When the anaesthetic wears off you may experience some slight discomfort, which however typically disappears after the first few hours. In the first few days healing will include some swelling and (variably) some bruising. Regularly cooling your eyelids in the first 24 hours will help in keeping this swelling to a minimum. Prevention of bending down or lifting heavy goods in the first few days also helps. You may find it more comfortable to sleep with an extra pillow to elevate your head in this period. The healing process might induce some dryness in your eyes. If you experience this sensation, you should treat it by using eye-drops (or ointment during the night). A feeling of tightness in your eyelids may persist on and off for several weeks.

What will the scars be like?

The scar follows the curvature of the eyeball and should, over time, not be visible anymore when opening the eyes. At the side of the orbit the scar will be visible for a few millimetres, especially as it will be slightly red for the first few months. Eventually the colour will even out. Typically a scar will take one year to fully mature and in the majority of cases the scars, although present, should not be visible anymore by that time.

How long before I can resume my life?

Most people manage to return to light activities in the first few days after surgery. At one week after surgery a follow-up appointment will be made for you at the Radetzky villa, where the sutures will be removed. From then on it is possible to apply make-up again. At this stage the swelling and possible bruising normally is reduced to a level where social activities can be resumed. Occasionally however it takes longer for these side effects to disappear completely. We therefore advice you to postpone any important social activity until at least three weeks after the operation. We also recommend you to refrain from doing any strenuous activities in the first 2 weeks.

What is good to know about the long term?

Although the aging process proceeds also after surgery, it is extremely uncommon to do a blepharoplasty for a second time. You can therefore expect the effect of this procedure to last for a long time.

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