Blepharoplasty is a surgical procedure used to repair a condition called dermatochalasis, or droopy eyelids. Droopy eyelids due to dermatochalasis is when excess skin on the upper eyelid loses elasticity and droops down over the eye, limiting vision and giving the eyes a heavy and tired appearance. Lower eyelid dermatochalasis may result from excess skin, fatty pockets, or a combination of both. Removal of the excess skin in upper eyelids will improve an individual's field of vision as well as their appearance. Lower eyelid blepharoplasty will remove the fat below the eyes and improve one's appearance.
When people refer to the term "eyelid surgery," they are often referring to blepharoplasty, although there are several procedures that fall under the category of eyelid surgery. Upper eyelid blepharoplasty may be covered by insurance depending on the amount of vision which is impaired or blocked by the droopy eyelids, and whether the procedure is a covered benefit under an individual's particular insurance plan.
Dr. Victor is the only physician to care for the patient from beginning to end. This ensures that each patient receives continuity of care and most importantly, the highest level of care.
The first step towards eyelid surgery is a consultation with Dr. Victor in our office. Our technician will gather information regarding the patient's condition and concerns, and take digital photos. Dr. Victor then meets with the patient to perform his examination and discuss his findings. If Dr. Victor determines that the patient is a candidate for blepharoplasty, a visual field screening may be scheduled. The screening takes place in the office with the use of a visual field analyzer machine. This 20 minute test helps to determine how much of a patient's vision is being blocked by the drooping of the eyelids. The visual field results, along with Dr. Victor's exam notes and the photos are submitted to the insurance company for pre-approval. If the surgery is deemed to be cosmetic in nature, versus medically necessary, then there is no need to submit documentation to insurance.
History and Physical
Once surgery has been approved and a date is scheduled, the patient returns to the office approximately a week before surgery for a pre-operative appointment, called a history and physical. Dr. Victor performs a general medical examination to make sure that patient is healthy enough for surgery, and that there have been no changes in medication or medical condition. Instructions regarding the day of surgery are given. The H & P provides another opportunity for patients to ask questions regarding the procedure, the recovery or any concerns they may have.
Day of Surgery
Surgery is performed at an outpatient facility close to the office. Patients are given a specific time to arrive at the surgical center. They should be driven there by an adult who waits during the procedure and drives them home afterwards. A blepharoplasty procedure lasts between 30 and 45 minutes. The patient is made comfortable with an intravenous sedative. Eye shields are provided and should be worn at night for approximately 10 nights after surgery. The shields are worn to ensure that the sutures are not disturbed or rubbed accidentally during sleep. Ice packs or bags of frozen peas are recommended for the first 48 hourse to keep any swelling or bruising to a minimum.
Post Operative Appointment
A week after surgery, Dr. Victor removes the sutures and checks the progress of the healing. Eye shields continue to be worn for several more days while the delicate skin is still in the early stages of healing. Patients return four months after surgery when the healing process is 100% complete so that Dr. Victor can examine the eyelids one last time.
When vision is blocked due to droopy eyelids, eyelid surgery can significantly improve both distance and peripheral vision. It can also revitalize your appearance by removing that heavy, tired look that droopy eyelids present.
Trust your eyes to a fellowship trained eyelid plastic surgeon,
who has performed thousands of blepharoplasty procedures over the last 35 years.
The following are pictures of actual patients whose bilateral (both eyes) blepharoplasty surgery was performed by Dr. Victor.