Posted on August 7, 2023 in Eyelid Surgery
Blepharoplasty (eyelid lift surgery) is a popular procedure for men and women who look older or chronically tired because of their droopy eyelids. Board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Evan Ransom specializes in several different blepharoplasty techniques, including options for the anesthesia used during your surgery.
Blepharoplasty can be performed on the upper and lower eyelids to help patients achieve a brighter, more youthful appearance. During upper blepharoplasty surgery, sagging skin and excess fat are removed to lift and tighten droopy upper eyelids. Similarly, lower eyelid surgery addresses fat pads and deep hollows on the lower eyelids. The upper and lower eyelids can be treated during one surgical procedure. Eyelid surgery is also a popular procedure to combine with other procedures for seamless rejuvenation of the upper face.
There are two main anesthesia options, and Dr. Ransom will help you decide which is best for your procedure. Your comfort level is one of the main factors to consider, but whether you choose to combine your eyelid lift with other surgeries will also impact the decision.
General anesthesia or mild sedation can be administered intravenously (IV sedation). It is always used for lower blepharoplasty. General anesthesia puts patients completely to sleep while mild sedatives place patients into a deep state of relaxation, sometimes called twilight sleep. This form of anesthesia can be used if you are nervous about surgery or if you choose to combine blepharoplasty with a facelift, brow lift, or other procedures. Deeper sedation is often recommended for combination procedures because they take longer and are more invasive, which can be uncomfortable if the patient is awake.
Local anesthetic is injected into the eyelids and around the eye area to numb the surgical site. It is only used for upper blepharoplasty, not lower eyelid surgery. Patients will be completely awake but won’t feel any pain. Dr. Ransom will also periodically check in with you during the procedure to make sure you are comfortable. Since blepharoplasty is considered a minimally invasive surgery, many patients consider local anesthesia and do not find their procedure to be uncomfortable. Local anesthesia is also more cost-effective and safer, especially if you’ve had bad experiences with anesthesia in the past.
The benefit of local anesthesia is that blepharoplasty patients can return home quicker after surgery. General anesthesia puts patients into a deep sleep, and it can take a few hours to wake up. Despite this initial recovery, there is no difference in the healing process after blepharoplasty with local or general anesthesia.
Patients can expect to spend about one week or less recovering at home. Mild swelling and bruising only lasts a few days and can be alleviated by keeping your head alleviated, applying cold compresses, and taking pain medication as needed. Within 1-2 weeks, the swelling has already gone down, and the incisions are hardly noticeable.
Dr. Ransom is highly skilled in facial plastic surgery and emphasizes natural-looking results that enhance his patients’ appearances. To learn more about blepharoplasty in San Francisco and discuss your options in detail, schedule a consultation today at our San Francisco or Mill Valley office.
Dr. Evan Ransom is an Ivy League-educated and Ivy League trained Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeon. He is a Double Board Certified Head and Neck Surgeon and Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery and fellowship-trained in facial plastic, reconstructive, and laser surgery. His practice is in the San Francisco Bay Area, serving patients from San Francisco, Oakland, Marin County, Palo Alto, Silicon Valley, Walnut Creek, the East Bay, and all over Northern California.