What are the different kinds of upper eyelid surgery?
Upper eyelid surgery is commonly done to create or enhance a crease (double eyelid). It is also performed to rejuvenate the aging upper eyelid. Upper eyelid surgery can also enhance the eye by increasing the opening of the eye in patients with a droopy upper eyelid (ptosis).
What are the different methods of creating a double eyelid?
The Suture (no incision or scarless) Method
This method is suitable for younger patients without minimal excess skin or fat. 2-4 sutures are placed in the upper eyelid to create a fold. This procedure generally has a shorter recovery time compared to conventional techniques – the crease will look natural within 1-2 weeks. However, there is a slightly higher chance of the crease fading, compared to the ‘cutting’ techniques. This procedure is usually done under local anesthesia (sometimes with light sedation) and takes 30-60 min.
The Conventional (incision or cutting) Method
A cut is made along the upper eyelid to create a fold. In some cases skin and fat can be removed. Recovery time may be longer compared to the suture only method as swelling takes a longer time to resolve. However, there is a lower chance of the crease fading compared to suture only methods. The crease can be expected to last for many years, until the brows and upper eyelids start to droop. This procedure is usually done under local anesthesia (sometimes with light sedation) and takes 1-1.5 hours.
The Short or Minimal Incision Method
The incision is shorter compared to conventional cutting method. In addition to a shorter scar, recovery time may be shorter compared to conventional techniques, with swelling subsiding faster. This method would be preferred if no excess skin needs to be removed. This procedure is usually done under local anesthesia (sometimes with light sedation) and takes 1-1.5 hours.
What about aging upper eyelids?
With aging upper eyelids, a there is usually some excess skin that needs to be removed. In many cases, there is droopiness or sagging of the eyebrows which is best corrected by a browlift procedure.
Can droopy eyelids be corrected?
A tired-looking appearance may be due to a drooping upper eyelid or upper eyelid ptosis. In true ptosis, the aperture of the eye (distance between upper and lower eyelids) is reduced. Possible causes include aging (resulting in stretching of the muscles that open the eye) and injury. In some cases ptosis is congenital (since birth). Surgery to correct ptosis usually involves repairing or tightening the muscles that open the upper eyelid. Creating or enhancing the eyelid crease is often done together as part of the same operation.