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What Does Recovery Look Like After Ptosis Surgery?

Ptosis is a condition in which the skin and muscles above the eyes begin to sag and droop. In severe cases, the skin droops over the eyes and obstructs vision, which can lead to significant problems later on.

Fortunately, this issue can be easily rectified through surgery. A blepharoplasty for this condition, sometimes called droopy eyelid surgery, can reduce the impact of ptosis on an individual’s appearance and health. Like most types of surgery, a droopy eyelid surgery entails some recovery period. If you are considering blepharoplasty to correct ptosis, read this guide to figure out what your recovery will look like after ptosis surgery.

What is Ptosis?

Ptosis is a condition where the skin of the upper eyelids becomes loose and begins to droop. The main symptom is drooping eyelids in one or both eyes. Ptosis is typically identified by a very modest change in the patient’s visual acuity. Rarely, weariness and eye irritation may accompany the drooping lid. You may typically rely on your doctor’s skill to determine whether you are experiencing ptosis or something else.

More severe cases of ptosis can cause the skin on the drooping eyelid to get in the way of daily activities like driving and using heavy machines. In these situations, it is easier to get insurance companies to cover your eyelid surgery because it may be deemed medically concerning. You can discuss with your doctor whether or not this is feasible.

Ptosis: A Daily Nuisance

Ptosis is not normally considered a life-threatening condition, but because of its cosmetic consequences and potential to impede daily activities, some patients may decide to have the condition surgically addressed. Ptosis is considered medical-grade if it substantially interferes with regular activities and reduces one’s ability to perform daily tasks at a normal level. Ultimately, it will be up to you and your physician to determine if your specific case of ptosis meets these criteria.

Everybody’s experience with ptosis is unique, so after figuring out the most accurate way to assess your particular needs, your doctor will probably recommend a plan of action and set of instructions. Your doctor will also ask you a series of questions to assess your general physical health.

Ultimately, everything is done to provide you with the best care that specifically meets your needs as a patient. Given this, it will also be beneficial for you to communicate your hopes and concerns regarding the surgery.

Blepharoplasty: The Surgical Solution for Ptosis

There are several types of eyelid procedures, and each one addresses a particular requirement. You and your doctor can explore which ones work best for you. Your doctor will usually operate with the muscles and skin around your eyes during an eyelid surgery to give that area a more youthful appearance.

It is unlikely that a younger individual considering a blepharoplasty is doing so for medical reasons. Instead, it will likely be an attempt to address any aesthetic concerns you may have with your upper face and eye area. If this is the case, it is crucial to speak with your doctor about the results you hope to see after surgery so they can be sure to recommend the correct treatment for you.

The most effective way to correct ptosis in the body is to have an upper blepharoplasty, which can eliminate the condition from your top eyelids. 

Who Can Benefit from Blepharoplasty?

Even beyond the issue of ptosis, doctors utilize blepharoplasties for many purposes, both medical and aesthetic. Discussing with your doctor whether or not you could benefit from some blepharoplasty could lead you to some enlightening places and solutions for a variety of medical and aesthetic concerns. A blepharoplasty can adequately tackle some of the following conditions:

  • Chronic under-eye bags
  • Excessive loose skin on the lower eyelids  
  • Excessive loose skin on the upper eyelids
  • General dissatisfaction with the appearance of one’s eyes

In addition, a blepharoplasty can be effectively combined with other types of plastic surgery procedures, should your physician deem it possible and safe. Some of the other types of procedures that can be combined with a blepharoplasty include:

  • A brow lift
  • General facelift
  • Dermal filler injections
  • Other types of procedures

If you have ideas about a synergistic procedure that you would like to combine with a blepharoplasty, run them by your physician. They can guide you toward what would make sense for you in your specific situation. Much of the availability of this will depend on your health profile.

What Does Ptosis Surgery Recovery Look Like?

Upper eyelid surgery outcomes should last for about 5-7 years before needing a follow-up revision eyelid surgery. That should give you adequate time to determine whether the surgery ultimately served your interests during that period.

You may need to return sooner rather than later for revision surgery if you are an older patient. Once your initial results have become more consistent over time, your physician will be able to advise you on whether or not they believe a revision operation is necessary.

It is important to recognize that eyelid surgery comes with some inherent risks. The most common side-effects patients experience after this procedure include:

  • Dry and irritated eyes
  • Scarring
  • Injury to the eye muscles
  • Skin discoloration
  • Difficulty closing the eyes or other issues
  • A need for revision surgery

In addition, you should expect to experience a number of standard symptoms in the weeks immediately following your procedure, including:

  • Watery eyes
  • Light sensitivity
  • Double vision
  • Pain
  • Discomfort
  • Swelling and bruising
  • Puffiness surrounding the surgical site

Enhancing Your Recovery

There are certain behaviors you can engage in to ensure that your recovery process goes as smoothly as possible. The following tips have helped many patients fully recover from their blepharoplasty with little issue:

  •  Utilize any prescribed eye drops and ointments.
  • Apply cold compresses to the surgical site.
  • Sleep with your head raised higher than your chest in the period immediately following your procedure.
  • Wear prescription sunglasses if you anticipate being exposed to a large amount of sunlight.
  • Use anti-inflammatories such as acetaminophen to control your pain.

In addition, there are certain activities that you should refrain from to avoid incurring complications during your recovery process. Try to avoid engaging in the following:

  • Strenuous and stressful physical activity
  • Rubbing your eyes
  • Smoking tobacco
  • Wearing contact lenses for about two weeks following your initial procedure
  • Taking aspirin, ibuprofen, or other kinds of NSAID anti-inflammatories

In addition, you should stay aware of any troubling symptoms that can indicate that you may be at risk for a serious health event in relation to your surgery. Some of the symptoms that can indicate you should seek out immediate medical attention include:

  • Chest pain
  • Unusual heart palpitations
  • Severe eye pain
  • Vision problems
  • Bleeding

Will I Qualify for Eyelid Surgery?

Most people with insurance who want to have eyelid surgery will likely be able to have their insurance provider pay for the procedure. Unfortunately, some people may not qualify for coverage of this procedure or will have their doctor deny the treatment if they have a variety of long-term medical conditions. The following conditions could prevent a person from getting treatment:

  • Having a severe chronic health condition like cancer or diabetes
  • Being a current smoker
  • Being someone who suffers from medical conditions that impact their blood flow
  • Being someone who has faced issues with eyelid-related surgeries in the past 

During a preoperative consultation, you can and should discuss all of your cosmetic and medical concerns with your doctor. This kind of consultation will take place before any actual medical procedures are carried out to make sure you and your doctor are on the same page about the desires and expected outcomes of the procedure.

Generally speaking, you will know more about your suitability for upper eyelid surgery following your preoperative consultation and medical screening. Additionally, you will have a better idea of how your ptosis restoration operation and upper eyelid surgery will work together.

During this time before your surgery, you and your doctor will discuss a variety of subjects, such as your personal health, surgery history, and family medical history. The preoperative consultation is also your opportunity to discuss your specific set of cosmetic goals with your physician.

Make a Plan for Your Procedure

Since everyone’s experience with ptosis is different, your doctor will likely suggest a treatment plan and provide you with instructions after evaluating your particular needs.

Your doctor will inquire about your general physical condition as well as your past medical history in addition to your specific case of ptosis.

In the end, the aim is to guarantee that you have the best care possible, tailored to your particular requirements as a patient. To achieve this, you must discuss any particular hopes and worries you may have with the surgeon prior to the procedure and look closely at all the recovery advice from your doctor after the ptosis surgery.

The Best Eyelid Surgeon in Beverly Hills

Dr. Taban and his elite team are dedicated to providing patients with the best in blepharoplasty. Now that you know what recovery from a ptosis surgery would look like, you should have more confidence in the procedure. If you are interested in discussing whether this procedure would work for you and your schedule, contact our office today to set up an appointment for high-quality oculoplastic care.