Often the most noticeable signs of aging in the face appear around the eyes. A tired appearance to the eye area, with drooping lids, and darkness combined with a frowning forehead, give you a tired and less energetic look. Luckily, there are surgical procedures available that can dramatically reverse this look.
A browlift and/or an eyelid surgery, called blepharoplasty, erases many of the effects of periocular aging, leaving you with a smoother, more elevated and youthful appearance. At our state-of-the-art plastic surgery facility, Dr. Lori L. Cherup evaluates patients for brow lift and blepharoplasty procedures.
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A browlift, or forehead lift, is a procedure that repositions the brow in an arch that is pleasing, and also in a woman, positions it at 1 cm above the brow ridge. It also potentially smoothes out the wrinkles and frown lines of the forehead. Once you have a browlift, it will never need to be redone again in your lifetime.
Most of Dr. Cherup’s browlifts are done using the endoscope to visualize the dissection. Dr. Cherup uses the latest minimally invasive surgical techniques that she can for you. This endoscopic browlift technique uses three one-inch incisions just inside the frontal hairline. The forehead skin is elevated from underneath and then rotated up and outward, sometimes anchoring it with absorbable screws, so that the brows are elevated and the forehead skin is smooth. The skin is closed with staples or sutures. The surgery is usually performed using local IV sedation anesthesia, but can be done under general anesthesia.
After the surgery is finished, fluffy bandages cover the forehead for about two days. Stitches and staples are removed at about two weeks postop. We usually recommend only one week off work and limited physical activity for two weeks.
The risks of browlift surgery include bleeding under the skin, temporary loss of sensation across the forehead skin and into the scalp, poor scarring along the incision line in the scalp, and temporary hair loss right along the incision. Often when an incision is made in the scalp, the hair bulbs are shocked, and will fall out right along the incision about two weeks later. The hair, however, will regrow within four weeks. Dr. Cherup can discuss the risks in detail with you during your consultation.
Eye Lid Surgery (Blepharoplasty)
A blepharoplasty, or eyelid surgery, addresses the area of the face that first shows signs of aging — the skin and fat around the eyes. These are structures most affected by stress, UV damage, lack of sleep, alcohol, and smoking.
If you need a browlift at the time of the blepharoplasty, and do not do it — the blepharoplasty result will only be partially successful in rejuvenating the upper face.
An upper blepharoplasty is done by marking the skin to be removed preoperatively. The surgery is often carried out under IV sedation anesthesia. The skin is excised with the scalpel, scissors, and a laser. Pooching fat in the upper eye hollow is teased out and removed. The least amount is taken. The incision is closed with a subcuticular stitch that is removed at six days.
Dr. Cherup’s lower blepharoplasty is almost always done through the conjunctiva of the lower lid. It is called a transconjunctival lower lid blepharoplasty. By gently retracting forward the lower eyelid, an incision is made inside the lid with the laser. The laser opens up the space where the extra fat lies, pooching forward in “the bag.” The fat is carefully teased out, so that a flat gentle curve from the lid to the cheek remains. The incision heals without sutures. Dr. Cherup almost always resurfaces the outer eyelid skin with the UltraPulse laser, which smoothes the wrinkles and improves the color.
Recovery from upper eyelid surgery lasts for about six days. White, stretchy tape called Flexzan is used on the lower lids for about one week to heal the lasered skin. Upper lid sutures are removed at one week. The laser-resurfaced skin will appear pink after the Flexzan is removed, but fades over about a month’s period. It can be covered with makeup at one to two weeks.
The risks of eyelid surgery include a hematoma in the eyelid, imperfect incisional scarring, and prolonged swelling of the eyelid conjunctiva, which is quite rare. Dr. Cherup can discuss the risks in detail during your consultation.
Post Operative Care
You may shampoo your hair as soon as 48 hours after surgery. Because of the decreased sensation that often occurs in this eye area, use warm water rather than hot, and gently use your fingertips. You must at all times keep the Flexzan dressing dry. Keeping the head elevated on two to three pillows or lying against the back of the couch helps to reduce swelling and discomfort. Ice is applied directly to the eyelids for two days after surgery to decrease swelling and bruising. No heavy lifting, straining, or aerobic exercise is permitted for two weeks. You may continue to do your normal activities of daily living as long as you do not exert yourself, which raises your blood pressure.
Schedule a Consultation
If you’re ready to restore your youth and vitality through a Browlift, schedule your free consultation.
Call Dr. Cherup at (412) 220-8181 or (877) 441-0639 or use our online form below.
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Dr. Cherup can employ additional techniques to give the periorbital area a beautiful, age-appropriate appearance. Using fillers like Restylane, we can fill in those dark hollows under your eyes. You might also consider Canthopexies, which are procedures that tighten the lower lateral lid in a more upward and tight position against the eye socket to improve a lax, senile lid.
From Our Patients…
“Dr. Cherup is an incredibly amazing, intelligent, and caring doctor who goes above and beyond to enhance her patients’ lives. I would recommend her to anyone. She is the best of the best and so is her caring staff.”
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