What Do Your Eyes Say About You?
November 02, 2017
By Julie Payne, Eye Surgical Associates
Your eyes tell a lot about you. They show emotion, your level of interest or understanding and unfortunately, they show age. As we age, the tone and shape of our eyelids can loosen and sag. Heredity and sun exposure also contribute to this process. This excess, puffy, or lax skin can make you appear more tired or older than you are. Eyelid surgery or blepharoplasty (pronounced “blef-a-ro-plasty”) can give the eyes a more youthful look by removing excess skin, bulging fat, and lax muscle from the upper or lower eyelids.
Sarah and Ruth are two women who recently had blepharoplasty and were willing to share their experience and photos. Their names have been changed in this story to protect their privacy.
Sarah felt her eyes were telling the wrong story. “The tired image I saw in the mirror was not matching the energetic person I am,” she said. Plus, her eyelids felt heavy; makeup smeared and was difficult to apply. Knowing that her eyelids were only going to sag more, she decided to have cosmetic surgery on her upper lids.
Although cosmetic blepharoplasty on upper and lower lids is not covered by insurance, there may be medical reasons for the eyelid surgery. Heavy upper eyelids (ptosis) may interfere with vision, and if they do, insurance companies will often pay for surgery to lift the lids and eliminate the obstruction to expand the visual field.
At first, Ruth noticed that she was not seeing well and thought the obstruction was just the rims of her glasses, so she didn’t worry about it. Even when an eye technician and eye doctor mentioned that her droopy lids were interfering with her vision and insurance would likely cover her costs for surgery, she didn’t pursue it. Then her primary care doctor told her that if she wanted to keep driving she needed to do something about her eyelids. “I have a horrific attitude about any surgery to do with my eyes,” she said, but at 82 years old, she decided it was time.
Both Sarah and Ruth were surprised by the simplicity of the surgery. “There’s not much to it,” said Ruth. “The procedure was painless and quick,” Sarah added.
Both women had blepharoplasty done with a laser rather than a scalpel. “Although both scalpel and laser are safe and effective, there are some additional benefits to having the procedure done with a CO2 laser,” stated Daniel Brownstone, M.D at Eye Surgical Associates (ESA). “With a laser, there is minimized bleeding and bruising, reduced risk of scarring, less swelling and discomfort, and faster recovery time,” he explained. Dr. Brownstone has been doing blepharoplasty surgeries since 1995 and is certified by Coherent to use the CO2 Ultrapulse laser.
Sarah reported that the healing process took about “10 days for everything to look normal and not traumatic and noticeable to others.” Ruth said it was between two to three weeks before she felt her eyes were totally healed.
Ruth said that the biggest surprise was that her desire to read has come back. She had always been a voracious reader, but as her vision became more obstructed, she stopped reading for pleasure. Now she is seeing much better and back to reading again.
“I am extremely pleased with the results and would not hesitate to recommend the surgery to others!” said Sarah.
Whether you want to roll the clock back a few years for a more youthful appearance or you want to keep doing the things you’ve always loved, eyelid surgery may be a good solution for you to explore.
If you would like more information about blepharoplasty or to schedule a comprehensive eye exam, contact ESA Eye Surgical Associates at 309-662-7700. Ophthalmologists Daniel Brownstone, Catharine Crockett, Scott Pinter, and Optometrist Kathleen Vize will be happy to assist you. ESA is located at 1505 Eastland Drive Suite 2200 Bloomington IL.
Sarah Before Blepharoplasty
Sarah After Blepharoplasty
Ruth Before Blepharoplasty
Ruth After Blepharoplasty
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