For many individuals who have experienced sagging and droopy eyelids due to age, stress, environment or even congenital disorders, eyelid surgery is an effective option that helps restore the skin and give it a youthful, more rejuvenated appearance. Though it’s not an overwhelmingly invasive procedure, eyelid surgery is a delicate practice that often needs to be redone if it’s not performed properly the first time.
What’s Involved in Eyelid Surgery?
Eyelid surgery, or blepharoplasty in medical terms, involves creating a small incision in the natural creases of your upper and/or lower eyelid where the surgeon then removes excess skin, tightens underlying tissues, and removes the excess fat that causes puffiness beneath the eyes.
When eyelid surgery is done well, the results may not only help improve the look of aging and droopiness around the eyes, but can also improve impaired vision for those who suffer from ptosis, a condition in which the muscles in your eye are unable to lift the upper eyelid and make it difficult to see.
The immediate recovery process for eyelid surgery typically takes about 5-7 days, and after the general tightness and puffiness subsides, you will likely notice a brighter and lifted appearance around the eyes among other noticeable improvements. While the recovery is certainly manageable, there are some key factors to be prepared for ahead of and following your operation. Though you will be able to get back to your normal routine after the first two weeks of healing, the final results can take up to 6 months to a year to reveal themselves completely.
Because eyelid surgery can be a sensitive operation, selecting a doctor that you trust and who has extensive experience in the Blepharoplasty field can help to avoid an eyelid surgery redo.
How Can Eyelid Surgery Go Wrong?
Because the skin and tissue on and around the eyelid are so delicate, a blepharoplasty doesn’t come without its risks. A few complications that one might experience after a completed eyelid operation include eye infection and deep scars that have difficulty fading. Some people that have had eyelid surgery have reported experiencing dry, irritated eyes, temporary blurred vision and difficulty closing the eyes in the weeks following the procedure, which can also potentially lead to ptosis.
Two terms you’re likely familiar with if you’ve previously had eyelid surgery are overcorrections and undercorrections. An overcorrection occurs when a doctor “overcorrects” the eyelid’s original issue— leaving your eyelid too tight and difficult to close. Adversely, an Undercorrection occurs when a surgeon fails to remove enough tissue, and as a result, sometimes has to re-open the incision to remove the sufficient amount of tissue for visible lift and improvement.
Many undercorrections and overcorrections can be amended through skin surface rearrangement or reinforcement and may not need another operation.
Fixing an Unsuccessful Blepharoplasty
It’s completely possible to fix eyelid surgery that’s gone wrong, but it takes the care of a very delicate and meticulous plastic surgeon to do it correctly. The plastic surgeon performing a revised blepharoplasty must be extra vigilant during the operation because they are operating on already scarred and sensitive skin. For almost every single obstacle that might arise from eyelid surgery, there’s a variety of reconstructive techniques and blepharoplasty revisions that can be performed to restore the eye if the first procedure doesn’t go as planned.
Depending upon what went wrong during the first operation, you may find that you only need to stop in for a quick procedure such as getting fillers injected to help amend or delay the issue. In some cases, an eyelid revision is an easy fix because you might simply be unhappy with the results of your first blepharoplasty.
Take Time to Consider Your Eyelid Revision
If you find that you have noticeable discomfort and swelling or that your eyes seem to look asymmetric 2 months after your initial operation, it may be time to begin consulting with your doctor about revision options. Most of the time, doctors can correct an eyelid surgery gone wrong through skin flaps, skin grafts, cartilage grafts, and fat grafts.
Doctors understand that revision eyelid surgery is much more difficult to perform, and they typically recommend waiting about 6 months after the first operation to do the revision. Most importantly, taking time to heal after a revision and caring for your eyes as per your doctor’s guidelines are key in helping the eye healing process run smoothly and successfully.
At Pacifica Center for Plastic Surgery, Dr. Daniel G. Kolder, M.D. has established one of the most reputable plastic surgery practices in Southern California. The practice draws patients from Camarillo, Simi Valley, Oxnard, Los Angeles, Malibu, Santa Barbara, Westlake Village, Thousand Oaks and all of Ventura County.