Q&A Topic: Blepharoplasty

James R. Gordon, MD, PC, FACS, FAAO

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Q: What is Blepharoplasty?

A: Blepharoplasty (eyelid surgery) is the removal of excess fat, skin, and muscle from the upper and/or lower eyelids. The bulging outward of the lower lids often casts a shadow, causing “dark circles” below the eyes. Blepharoplasty helps to rejuvenate puffy, saggy, and tired-looking eyes; it can be performed in conjunction with laser skin resurfacing to tighten skin and reduce wrinkles to achieve a glowing appearance.

Q: Who is a candidate for blepharoplasty?

A: Age is not necessarily the deciding factor when determining who may be a candidate for eyelid surgery. Hereditary factors, as well as aging and weight fluctuation, can contribute to tired-looking eyes. In fact, many patients seeking eyelid surgery describe having “heavy lids and sunken eyes” from a young age.

Blepharoplasty is typically a cosmetic procedure to eliminate hooded eyelids and under-eye bags. Often, patients find their peripheral vision is improved following eyelid surgery. If the droopy eyelid interferes with vision and daily activities, the corrective procedure may be covered by medical insurance. During the consultation, your surgeon will perform a full evaluation to discuss your personal goals and concerns to determine the most effective treatment approach.

Q: What are the risks of blepharoplasty?

A: While blepharoplasty can create a more youthful appearance and help boost self-confidence, there is always an element of risk. Most common problems arise from over-correction. If too much skin is taken from the upper eyelids, not only will the results look artificial, the eyes may lose the ability to close completely. If fat is removed excessively, the eyes may appear hollowed. The best way to avoid these complications is to have a conservative, realistic blepharoplasty performed by an eyelid expert to ensure the eyes appear beautiful, yet natural.

Q: How should I choose my surgeon?

A: Blepharoplasty requires a very delicate and precise surgical approach. Incisions made around the eye are miniscule and carefully positioned to ensure minimal visibility—only the most skilled surgeons should be trusted to perform this procedure. A good place to begin is to get referrals from your primary care doctor. Word of mouth and research on the surgeon’s credentials (years in practice, board certification, malpractice record, awards, etc.) are helpful in choosing the right doctor. It would also be wise to consult with a couple of oculoplastic surgeons (ophthalmologists who perform cosmetic and reconstructive eyelid procedures) to get different opinions and to choose the surgeon you are most comfortable with.

Q: How much pain can I expect?

A: The blepharoplasty procedure itself is not painful. Patients typically complain of a burning sensation in the eyelids one hour after the procedure. Cold compresses, as well as Tylenol, are usually more than sufficient to relieve the discomfort. Patients are generally able to return to work about five to seven days after the surgery.

Dr. James R. Gordon is a renowned Board-Certified Ophthalmologist and Oculoplastic Surgeon (eyelid and facial cosmetic / reconstructive surgery) with over 15 years of extensive experience. He has a particular expertise in the handling of challenging, complex cases and is known as the “physician’s physician”. Throughout his career, Dr. Gordon has earned many prestigious awards and distinctions, including the Most Compassionate Doctor, Patients' Choice Award and consistently being named to Castle Connolly Top Doctors, Westchester Magazine’s Top Docs, U.S. News & World Report Top Doctors and Marquis Who's Who in America. Dr. Gordon is honored to be recognized as one of New York’s Best Doctors in The New York Times.

James R. Gordon, MD, PC, FACS, FAAO
Cosmetic Eyelid & Facial Surgeon

450 Mamaroneck Avenue
Harrison, NY 10528

984 North Broadway
Yonkers NY 10701


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