Cosmetic Surgery

Lower Eyelid Blepharoplasty

Blepharoplasty is the name for eyelid surgery, but there are different types depending on what needs to be corrected. Lower Eyelid Blepharoplasty in St. Louis may be a great option for you if you have developed unsightly eye bags in your lower eyelid area. Usually, aging is the cause of lower lid eye bags, but sometimes, they occur in younger people due to genetics or other medical conditions.

Lower Eyelid Blepharoplasty can make your eyes look more beautiful and youthful again, and it can be combined with other procedures. For example, if you also have droopy upper lids, you may opt to get Upper Eyelid Blepharoplasty or a Browlift at the same time as your Lower Eyelid Blepharoplasty. If you have other issues, such as excessive wrinkles around the eyes, you may decide to have skin resurfacing, Botox treatment or a Midface Lift at the same time.

Your Consultation

When you arrive, you will need to provide a medical history, as we need to know about major illnesses and problems such as heart disease and hypertension.  Prior surgery, especially facial surgery, is important. Medication history, including medications or supplements that thin the blood are vital to disclose. All over-the-counter pain/fever reducers (except Tylenol) and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID) are off limits for a week before eyelid surgery. Herbal medications such as ginkgo biloba and St. John’s Wort or high doses of fish oil, flax seed oil, or vitamin E must also be avoided.

Dr. Holds will ask you about what aspect of your eyelids bothers you and will discuss how this may relate to aging changes in nearby parts of your face. He will discuss with you exactly what your surgical goals are, what is attainable, and will create a plan to accomplish that. A mutual understanding of the goals, expectations, and outcomes is essential to a great result!

During your consultation, an examination is also performed to look at any eye conditions such as dry eye, which could limit or alter the surgical plan or be a concern after your procedure. As a board-certified ophthalmologist (eye surgeon), as well as an ophthalmic plastic surgeon, Dr. Holds is attuned to eye diseases and concerns. He is routinely referred patients by some of the best facial and cosmetic surgeons in the area because of this expertise and ability to safely operate on patients at higher risk for complications.

What is Lower Eyelid Blepharoplasty Like?

The surgery is an outpatient procedure during which you are under sedation and a local anesthetic. You will still feel sleepy afterward, so it’s important to have someone with you to drive you home. The procedure can take 1-3 hours depending upon your specific case.

Based on your anatomy, an incision is made inside the lower lid (our preferred location) or just below your lower eyelashes, so any minor scarring will not be visible after the healing process is complete. Sometimes, the doctor needs to remove excess skin, and other times, excess fat is removed or repositioned to smooth the lower lids.

Only experienced surgeons like Dr. Holds and his associates perform Lower Eyelid Blepharoplasty because it is more challenging than Upper Eyelid Blepharoplasty. This is because the area surrounding the lower lids is more sensitive to surgical disturbance, and the aging changes here are more difficult to correct.

The team at Ophthalmic Plastic and Cosmetic Surgery, Inc. in St. Louis is highly experienced with Lower Eyelid Blepharoplasty, having originally described a fat repositioning technique now used by hundreds of surgeons all over the world. Dr. Holds and his team has performed this technique on hundreds of patients with generally excellent results.

Recovery from Lower Eyelid Blepharoplasty

Most people experience some tightness, bruising, swelling, and discomfort for a couple of days after the procedure. For the majority of patients, the discomfort is very minimal and short-lived, but you can take pain medication, if necessary.

Most patients are prescribed eye drops and a medicated ointment to relieve any burning or itching that may occur in the first days after the procedure. Ice packs or cold compresses should be used for the first few days to keep swelling down, and it is important to keep your head elevated for a day or two.

You will probably be asked to return to the doctor’s office in about a week to have sutures removed and to check on your progress.  If laser skin resurfacing or a chemical peel has also been performed, a follow-up visit will generally be necessary after 1-2 days.

While the length of time for full healing varies from person to person, most people are able to return to work within 10-14 days, although complete healing may take up to 3 months. You can usually use makeup to cover up any discoloration within 10-14 days of your procedure.

If you have eye bags on your lower lids, call our office now at (314) 567-3567 to find out if Lower Eyelid Blepharoplasty is right for you.