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Types of Eyelid Surgery and the Essential Checklist for Getting it Done

Eyelid surgery corrects droopy or puffy eyelids and removes bags and pooches to give you a younger and more alert appearance. The procedure can also improve vision when sagging upper eyelids partially cover your eyes.

Types of Eyelid Surgery

Different types of eyelid surgery can be performed to correct a range of eyelid issues, and they can be combined and tailored to meet your unique needs. We’ll break them down here:

  • Eyelid lift is a general term that describes the end result of eyelid surgery. It includes the specific types of eyelid surgery listed below.
  • Upper eyelid blepharoplasty is surgery to trim excess skin from the upper eyelid and remove fat that may be contributing to a puffy appearance. When this upper eye area is tighter, your eyes will come out of hiding and look younger. Fine lines and wrinkles around the upper lids are also reduced. Upper eyelid blepharoplasty is typically the choice when excess skin on the upper eyelids hangs over the lashes or the upper eyelids appear too full.
  • Upper eyelid ptosis repair is surgery to correct a drooping upper eyelid. The procedure lifts the upper eyelid by tightening the muscle and tendon that normally keeps the eyelid raised. Ptosis repair can be combined with blepharoplasty to lift the upper eyelid and remove excess skin and fat.
  • Lower eyelid blepharoplasty trims excess skin from the lower eyelid and removes pockets of fat from below the eye. The fat is often moved to another area of the face where more volume is needed, such as the tear trough or the cheeks.
  • Lower eyelid ptosis repair corrects a drooping lower eyelid by tightening the tendon the supports the eyelid. As with the upper eyelid procedures, blepharoplasty and ptosis repair can be combined to address loose skin, puffy pockets of fat, and eyelid sagging.
  • Eyebrow lift is surgery to raise eyebrows that have dropped with age. Often, patients who think their problem is sagging eyelids actually need a brow lift rather than an eyelid lift, or a combination of the two. You can get a rough sense of this for yourself by gently lifting your eyebrows with your fingers to an attractive height. If that removes the droopy appearance of your upper eyelids, a brow lift may be a good solution for you.

Any of these procedures can be combined to address your unique cosmetic issues. It’s fairly common to have surgery on both the upper and lower eyelids and to have a brow lift at the same time as eyelid surgery.

Essential Checklist for Getting It Done

Choose a Top-quality Plastic Surgeon

As with any plastic surgery, your first step is to choose a plastic surgeon with the training, experience, and aesthetic expertise to deliver beautiful results with minimal risks. That’s especially true for eyelid surgery, where so many different approaches can be combined to address your unique cosmetic issues, and where the changes made are so precise and delicate. Look for a board-certified plastic surgeon with experience in performing eyelid surgery. Examine the surgeon’s before-and-after photos of actual patients to look for outcomes you’d like to have.

Follow the Surgeon’s Instructions to Prepare for the Surgery

These instructions typically include, among other steps:

In the week or two before your surgery, stop taking medications that can thin your blood. These include pain relievers such as aspirin and ibuprofen.

Arrange for someone to bring you home after your surgery, and to stay with you for your first night at home.

Plan for What You’ll Need in Recovery

Your surgeon will give you specific recovery instructions, but most eyelid surgery patients will need:

  • Two or three days of downtime for rest and healing.
  • Ice bags or packs to manage swelling and discomfort. (Bags of frozen peas or frozen wet sponges work for this.)
  • Small gauze pads
  • Eye drops
  • Over-the-counter pain medication

Learn More In a Personal Consultation

Dr. Steve Montante has many years of experience performing successful eyelid surgeries for his patients in Richmond. People who have had an eyelid lift report feeling more confident and attractive. Looking younger has even helped them in business, where ageism can be a problem. Contact our practice today at (804) 325-4795 or send an online request to schedule a consultation.