Frequently Asked Questions

What is an upper eyelid blepharoplasty (cosmetic eyelid surgery)?
Blepharoplasty (Greek: blepharo = eyelid +plasty = to change) is one of the most common cosmetic procedures performed in facial plastic surgery. Our eyes are one of the first places that show signs of aging. As we age we develop redundant skin on the eyelids which unfortunately makes us look tired. Blepharoplasty which is a simple outpatient procedure can reverse these changes and restore a more youthful and rested appearance.

What can blepharoplasty (Cosmetic Eyelid Surgery) achieve?
The eyes will appear more rested and vibrant after cosmetic eyelid surgery. Most often the results are so natural that friends and coworkers will comment on how great you look, without realizing that surgery was performed. The incision for blepharoplasty is hidden in natural creases of the eyelid, and it heals extremely well.

I can’t put my make up on like I used to without it getting all over the place, will cosmetic eyelid surgery help?
Absolutely! This is one of the most common complaints that we hear in our practice. As mentioned previously the redundant skin that develops as we age usually causes the makeup to smear. After surgery most of our patients are not only ecstatic about how they look, but are also thrilled that they don’t have to worry about this problem anymore.

Will there be a scar on my eyelids?
The incision on the upper eyelids is made on the eyelid crease, so not only is it hidden, but it also heals very nicely. Because of Dr. Vick’s focus on oculoplastic surgery you can rest assured that you will have an expert with focus on eyes.

Does insurance cover this?
Your health insurance may cover the cost of upper eyelid surgery if it is causing problems with your superior visual field. After your initial consultation with Dr. Vick, she can tell you if you may be eligible and if further tests are necessary to determine eligibility.

How long does the surgery take?
A typical primary eyelid surgery takes between one to two hours. No patient is ever rushed to achieve the best results.

What type of anesthesia is used?
Most eyelid surgery can be performed under local anesthesia. If desired, local anesthesia with sedation can be performed. This type of anesthesia, also known as Monitored Anesthesia Care or MAC, is performed by an anesthesiologist. The main advantages of this anesthesia are: (1) it does not require putting a breathing tube in the throat, (2) it does not require a breathing machine, (3) the recovery is much faster, (4) there is less nausea after surgery. All of these elements translate into greater comfort and safety. During MAC anesthesia, an intravenous needle is placed into one of the veins of the arm or hand. Relaxing medication is given to make the patient fall asleep. The amount of medication is adjusted as needed. After the patient is asleep, numbing medicine is placed in the skin of the area that is being operated on. During the procedure the patient is unaware of anything going on and cannot hear anything, yet he or she is breathing normally.

What is recovery like?
Depending on the person’s previous medical history there will be some swelling and bruising around the eyelids for one week. Most patients can return to work after 5 to 7 days. There is minimal eye discomfort after the procedure. Ice packs are recommended for the first 2 days or until swelling subsides