November 28, 2017

From the Smarty Health Corner and CEENTA: Bringing up blepharoplasty

By our Smarty friends at Charlotte Eye Ear Nose & Throat Associates, P.A.

Do your parents have dark circles around their eyes? Do they look tired even if they got a full night’s sleep? Do they have difficulty seeing out of the corners of their eyes? If so, the skin around their eyes may have started to sag or the fat has started to protrude, and it may be time to talk to them about a facial plastics procedure called blepharoplasty.

What is happening around their eyes?

Woman smiles blepharoplasty

As we age, the skin around our eyes becomes lax and stretches. The fat, which normally sits around the eyeball, herniates through weaknesses in the fine membranes, resulting in visible lumps or bulges. These changes tend to narrow our eyes. While these changes are inherited in some cases, for most people they start to develop in their early 30s. Not only can this make our eyes look smaller and tired, in some cases it can impair our peripheral vision. Peripheral vision is the ability to see things to the sides of us when we are looking straight ahead.

What is blepharoplasty like?

One of the most common facial plastic surgeries in America, blepharoplasty is designed to remove excess eyelid skin and protruding fat not just in order to make a person look more awake, but also to improve their peripheral vision and eliminate restrictions on their vision.

Don’t worry about your parents having scars. The upper lid incisions would be hidden in the natural creases of their eyelids. If they also get lower eyelid surgery, those incisions would either be on the inner side of the eyelid, or in a skin crease just below the eyelashes. With enough healing time, those incisions are generally imperceptible.

Blepharoplasty is done on an outpatient basis, under local anesthesia. The operation usually takes 1-2 ½ hours, CEENTA Ophthalmologist and Facial Plastics Specialist James Antoszyk, MD, said. If your parent’s eyebrows are also drooping, their doctor may also recommend an eyebrow lift for aesthetic purposes.

James Antoszyk, MD

James Antoszyk, MD

After their treatment

After surgery your parent’s doctor will give you a list of instructions for home care. Bandages will not be placed around their eyes. Swelling and discoloration can be treated with cold compresses, and will gradually disappear over the next two weeks.

Your parents should not exert themselves for two weeks following surgery. This includes exercise that results in an elevated heart rate or blood pressure. Most people can return to work after one to two weeks. Sutures will be removed one week after surgery.

Don’t let your parents live their lives without a full range of vision. Talk to them about getting a blepharoplasty and help them see with their peripheral vision again. They’ll be glad you did.

To make an appointment for a blepharoplasty consultation, call 704.295.3000.

Charlotte Eye Ear Nose & Throat Associates

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