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Eyelid Surgery Q&A
If aging or genetics has caused your eyelids to take on a droopy, baggy appearance, you may be interested in what blepharoplasty, or eyelid surgery, can do for you. Because of the delicate nature of eyelid surgery, many interested men and women are unable to find the answers to all of their blepharoplasty questions with simple online FAQs. Here, Tampa-St. Petersburg cosmetic surgeon Dr. Joseph J. Castellano responds to some of the most commonly asked questions about eyelid surgery from his own patients.
If you have a question about eyelid surgery that isn’t addressed here, contact us online today. Dr. Castellano is a skilled cosmetic surgeon who specializes in facial surgery, customizing his approach to each patient to ensure a positive experience from consultation through recovery.
I’ve thought a lot about eyelid surgery, but I still can’t decide if it’s the right procedure for me. How can I know if I’m making the right decision?
Any cosmetic surgery can feel like a huge decision. When the surgery concerns the face, patients often feel even more intimidated. If you think you might be a good candidate for eyelid surgery, but aren’t completely sure or don’t feel entirely comfortable with the idea of eyelid surgery, my suggestion is to schedule a consultation.
During your consultation, we can talk about your goals for eyelid surgery and any concerns you may have. I’ll also be able to give you a better idea of the exact results you can expect. Consultations are commitment-free, so you can simply go home afterwards, and take your time to think about everything we’ve discussed before making your final decision.
My eyelids aren’t very droopy, but I do have pretty bad crow’s feet. Is eyelid surgery the best answer to get rid of them?
Eyelid surgery won’t eliminate crow’s feet, but BOTOX® Cosmetic injections can. If crow’s feet are your primary concern, I recommend starting with BOTOX®, and then seeing how you feel about the improvement in your appearance. If you find that your lids give your eyes a hooded, aged appearance even after wrinkles around the eye area are minimized, come back in and we’ll talk about moving forward with eyelid surgery.
What’s the difference between ‘ethnic’ eyelid surgery and eyelid surgery for signs of aging?
There are a few different kinds of eyelid surgeries. The creation of a double eyelid in East Asian eyes is commonly referred to as double eyelid surgery. Many individuals of East Asian descent lack a double upper eyelid and choose to undergo surgery that creates a crease in the upper eyelid. This can be done for cosmetic purposes, as well as to improve vision in cases where the upper eyelid is too low over the eye.
However, men and women also frequently undergo eyelid surgery of the upper or lower lids to improve signs of aging. This type of eyelid surgery requires a different approach. During eyelid surgery to improve signs of aging, I typically remove conservative amounts of excess, baggy skin, eliminate excess fatty tissue that may contribute to puffy bags under the eyes, and tighten the remaining skin to create a refreshed, alert appearance.
Can I get eyelid surgery covered by medical insurance?
It is sometimes possible to get upper eyelid surgery covered by your insurance provider. Although specifics will vary, there are three typical insurance requirements that are roughly the same across all providers:
- You’ll need documented proof that your eyelids droop over your eyes in the form of a photo.
- You’ll need a documented clinical exam by a physician who confirms that your drooping eyelids obscure your vision.
- You’ll need evidence that your vision is improved when your eyelids are pulled out of the way. Normally, patients do this by taping their upper eyelids up to mimic the changes that could be made in the visual field by upper eyelid surgery.
It’s important to note, however, that insurance providers won’t cover lower eyelid surgery, as the lower eyelids do not typically affect vision.
How long do the results from eyelid surgery last?
Eyelid surgery tends to produce long-lasting results. Most patients only need to undergo the procedure one time in their life. However, each case is unique. There are some activities and lifestyle habits you can avoid to help contribute to the chances that your results will last.
For instance, smoking negatively affects skin thickness and laxity and should be avoided for the best blepharoplasty results. Patients should also avoid prolonged unprotected sun exposure to keep their skin in optimal condition. Allergies can sometimes cause the skin around the eyes to swell, which may affect your long-term results. If you have frequent allergy problems, consider discussing possible medications or other solutions to your allergies with your physician.
What about scars?
The incisions used during eyelid surgery are very small and typically well hidden. During upper eyelid surgery, the incision is placed in the eyelid fold, while in lower eyelid surgery, the incision is placed directly under the lash line. Scars resulting from eyelid surgery are almost never obvious or clearly visible. I take special care during my own operations to ensure that any incisions are placed as discreetly as possible so that resulting scars don’t detract from your final results.