Lower Eyelid Surgery
Eyes are the focus of the face, and one of the places where the first signs of ageing appear.
Wrinkles, loose skin, and puffy lower eyelids can make you look and feel more tired and older than you feel.
A lower eyelid lift can brighten your face and help eliminate this tired appearance.
Depending on your needs upper and lower eyelid surgery can be performed alone or together, and are often performed at the same time as other procedures, such as a facelift.
Is lower eyelid surgery for me?
People who have lower eyelid surgery often complain about loose and wrinkled lower eyelid tissue, puffy or baggy lower eyelids.
A lower eyelid lift aims to make your eyes look rejuvenated and refreshed, helping to give your whole face a more alert and positive appearance.
What does lower eyelid surgery involve?
Lower eyelid surgery is usually performed under general anaesthesia (with you asleep).
An incision is made either just below the lower eyelid eyelashes or inside the eyelid, allowing the wound to heal with minimal scarring.
Bulging fat that sits behind the muscles of the lower eyelid is carefully repositioned or removed.
The lower eyelid skin is tightened by removing just he right amount of lower eyelid skin, being careful to avoid an overdone or unnatural appearance.
The wounds are meticulously closed with small sutures. Sometimes a small temporary suture is placed in the outside of your eyelid to help prevent it from dragging down after the operation.
The entire procedure can take between one to two hours, depending on the different techniques used.
What is the recovery?
Lower eyelid surgery is performed as outpatient or day surgery, meaning you don’t need to stay overnight in hospital.
Bruising and swelling will occur after surgery, but can be reduced by sleeping with your head elevated and by placing cold packs over your eyes during the initial few days after the operation.
Most bruising and swelling has subsided by two weeks, which is when people will usually return to work.
Sutures are removed after 5 to 7 days.
Vigorous activities, inserting contact lenses, and applying makeup to your lower eyelids should all be avoided for at least three weeks.
What scars can I expect?
Lower eyelid surgery is done through a small incision beneath the lashes or inside the eyelid themselves, with both scars healing well.
Like all scars they take time to settle down, looking their best after several months.
What are the risks associated with lower eyelid surgery?
Lower eyelid surgery is associated with the following risks:
Bleeding and haematoma: haematoma refers to a collection of blood which needs to be removed in theatre. An important post-operative risk associated with lower eyelid surgery is bleeding behind the eyeball. This is a rare event, estimated to occur in 1 in 40 000 procedures. If this occurs then an urgent return to the operating theatre to remove the blood as soon as possible. If the blood doesn’t get removed quickly enough then there is a risk of blindness.
Infection and inflammation: your eyelid or eye may become infected or inflamed after the operation, and treatment requires drops or ointments.
Dry eye: your eyes often feel gritty or dry after lower eyelid surgery, with eye drops and ointment routinely used for several weeks after the operation.
Ectropion: this refers to pulling down of the lower eyelid that can occur rarely after surgery. Treatment can be with massage, tapes, and sometimes surgery. To avoid this Dr Colbert carefully measures out the amount of tissue that can be safely removed.
Visual problems: anytime we operate near the eye there is always a very small potential risk of bruising or damage to the eye or it’s surrounding structures. If this occurs it can create double vision, which is usually only temporary as the swelling settles.
Lower blepharoplasty is like any surgical procedures in that it carries risks - therefore before having any operation you should always speak to an appropriately qualified health practitioner about these potential risks.
How much does lower eyelid surgery cost?
Costs associated with cosmetic plastic surgery can be confusing. To help make things clearer we have listed the the following fees that make up the final cost.
Surgical fee: Medicare will partly pay for some surgical procedures that are itemised by the government, however depending on the nature of your operation there will be some out of pocket expenses. Dr Colbert will discuss these costs with you during your consultation.
Anaesthetic fee: Medicare covers most of the anaesthetic fee, except in the case of some cosmetic operations.
Hospital fee (this includes operation room fee, bed costs, surgical or medication fees, and any other hospital extras): Medicare does not cover this fee. If you have private health insurance then this may be covered by your insurance fund, but you should check with your fund if there is any out of pocket expenses. If you have no private insurance then you will have to pay this fee on discharge from the hospital.
Where can I find out more?
To arrange to speak to Dr Colbert about eyelid surgery please contact our friendly office staff.
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