The ageing process can seriously affect the appearance of the eyelids and interfere with visual function. As the eyelid skin is the thinnest and most poorly supported in the body, this ageing process is accelerated compared to the rest of the face in most people.
Specialist eyelid surgery corrects the position of eyelids on the eyes by lifting and reducing their bulk. It may rejuvenate the face and sometimes even improve vision which was previously obstructed by the heavy eyelids and has a profound effect on facial expression.
Eyelid lifting and recontouring (Upper Blepharoplasty)
The ageing process often results in redundant upper eyelid skin folds and loss of definition of the normal upper eyelid crease. Also the actual upper eyelids may become droopy – called ‘Ptosis’. The same process in the lower eyelids allows the fat cushions of the eye sockets to protrude forward, giving the appearance of ‘bagginess’, so someone can look permanently tired and sad despite having adequate rest and good health.
Blepharoplasty is an operation that can ‘freshen up’ the eyes as well as an ageing face. Consequently, many people will consider undergoing eyelid surgery before or instead of a full face-lift. This usually involves removing the surplus skin and re-contouring the protruding fat pockets.
The upper eyelid surgery is carried out through a thin incision in the skin of the upper lid and the incision is closed with fine sutures. In the lower eyelid, the incision can be made in two possible places: either hidden just underneath the eyelashes where excess fat and skin has to be removed; or from the ‘inside’ of the eyelid so no scar is visible on the skin (where only excess fat has to be removed). Occasionally in the some patients the use of dermal fillers may be appropriate.
Ectropion – treating an eyelid that has turned outwards
Entropion – what to do when an eyelid has turned inwards
Note: All treatment is preceded by a consultation and examination to establish the correct diagnosis.