It is important when considering surgery to understand that all operations have risks and blepharoplasty is no exception.
All eyelid operations have a risk of (in order that they may occur):
• Bleeding: this may lead to more extensive bruising and swelling, but is unlikely to affect the final result. It is uncommon. There is a very remote possibility that the bleeding may require a return to the operating theatre.
• Infection: there is a very small risk of wound infection which would be expected to respond readily to antibiotics. The eyes may be irritated and weepy for a while, but the ointment that you go home with normally prevents this.
• Opening of the wound line: This is uncommon. If it is a small area it will probably heal without treatment without causing any ill effect on the result. If a more significant part of the wound has opened this may require repairing under some local anaesthetic. Again the final result should be unaffected.
• Double vision: This affects lower eyelid surgery and again is very rare and in the vast majority of cases resolves in a few days without treatment. An ophthalmic specialist review would be provided.
• Loss of vision: The risk of this is quoted as 1 case in 50,000 and it has not been reported in the UK amongst plastic surgeons for a very long time, but it must be mentioned before the operation.
• Dry eyes: this is reasonably common and due to swelling, (about 1 in 10 cases) but settles in time and may require the use of artificial tears for a while until the swelling settles.
• Watery eyes: again this is due to swelling and is reasonably common, but settles quickly.
• Pigment change in the lower lid: this is rare and normally associated with high levels of bruising. It normally resolves without treatment, but can be treated if persistent.
• Poor scars: this is very rare although it is not uncommon for the scars to become slightly more visible for a while around the 6 -10 week mark. Treatment is available if this is troublesome.
• Asymmetry, lower lid retraction (pulling down away from the eye) and hollow eyelids are all consequences of surgical technique and are rare and mostly correctable.
• As this is a surgical procedure to deal with appearance no guarantee can be given to the final appearance, but if we agree it is an unsatisfactory result correction will be offered at no additional cost.
• All operations can result in long term discomfort.
• All operations have a small risk of Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT), chest infection and Pulmonary embolism. Death following elective surgery is exceptionally rare (1:250,000 in fit and well people)
The majority of people who undergo eyelid surgery are very pleased with the result and feel it makes a very positive change to their appearance.