Eyelid Surgery

When you look in the mirror, do the eyes looking back at you appear tired and older than you feel they should? Board-certified plastic surgeons Dr. Thomas Mustoe and Dr. Sammy Sinno perform blepharoplasty, often called eyelid surgery, in Chicago to correct the wrinkling, sagging, and puffiness around the eyes that can contribute to a fatigued and aged appearance. Dr. Mustoe and Dr. Sinno have performed more than 1,500 lower blepharoplasty and over 2,000 upper blepharoplasty procedures.

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What Is Eyelid Surgery?

Blepharoplasty is a surgical procedure performed to reduce the excess eyelid skin and fat that can make you look tired or prematurely aged. This procedure also addresses the hooding caused by drooping upper eyelid skin, which can be so significant that it impairs vision. Dr. Mustoe and Dr. Sinno use proven yet innovative techniques to correct puffiness, sagging, and wrinkling in both the upper and the lower eyelids.  The result is a very natural, youthful and refreshed appearance that brightens the entire eye area. The results they create are reliably natural, keeping the shape of the eyelid unchanged while creating a more youthful appearance.

If the brow itself is sagging or heavy due to excess, wrinkled forehead skin, our surgeons can perform a brow lift to address these concerns. Often a modified lateral brow lift can help the sagging in the lateral part of the eyelid without changing eyebrow position, and can be performed on men with male pattern baldness.

What Is the Difference Between Cosmetic & Functional Blepharoplasty?

Cosmetic eyelid surgery removes and adjusts drooping skin to make someone look more youthful. Functional eyelid surgery is necessary when that drooping skin becomes so pronounced that it begins to interfere with vision. Functional blepharoplasty also generally produces good cosmetic results. Our surgeons are very experienced with both forms of the surgery and will discuss whether you have any functional issues during your consultation.

Dr. Mustoe and Dr. Sinno

Why Choose Dr. Mustoe & Dr. Sinno

Through extensive research and experience, Dr. Mustoe and Dr. Sinno have developed several innovations that contribute to a better rhinoplasty procedure and result, characterized by:

  • Predictable, natural-looking outcomes
  • Use of local anesthesia with sedation
  • Shortened, more comfortable recovery
  • Minimal bruising
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What Causes the Eyelids to Sag?

This area of the face is often one of the first to show signs of aging because the eyelid skin and underlying supporting fascia are very thin. There are a number of different factors that can cause a person’s upper or lower eyelid skin to droop. These usually include genetic factors such as skin thickness, as well as environmental influences such as sun exposure and whether or not the person is a smoker. Drooping eyelid skin is such a common concern that eyelid surgery is perennially among the top facial cosmetic surgeries in the U.S.

Our Quick-Recovery Approach

Dr. Mustoe and Dr. Sinno perform each surgery precisely and meticulously and have had great success in accelerating recovery. With skillful use of local anesthesia and gentle surgical technique, they are able to perform many procedures with light oral sedation in office and others with reduced post-op discomfort and recovery time. Utilizing IV sedation in a surgicenter alongside experienced anesthesiologists allows the surgeons to avoid many side effects associated with general anesthesia. The result is a quicker and more comfortable healing process.

Both surgeons share the same essential philosophy of being attentive and hands-on in post-op care. All patients are given their surgeon’s direct cell phone number after surgery to ensure they receive prompt responses to any concerns or questions.

Who Is a Candidate for Eyelid Surgery?

Any patients who are in good general health and who have signs of aging around their eyelids can be good candidates. These signs include wrinkling and sagging skin, as well as puffiness or under-eye bags. People who have vision problems because of sagging skin make excellent candidates. Most patients are in their 40s or older, but there is no set age range for this procedure as long as the patient is healthy. Some patients have excess fat surrounding the eye that presents as bags or circles underneath the eyes that can be troublesome even in their 20s.

How Is Upper Eyelid Surgery Performed?

Upper Eyelid Surgery Diagram

Upper Eyelid Surgery Incision

Surgery of the upper lids removes the excess skin and tissue which cause droopy or hooded eyelids. In addition, Dr. Mustoe and Dr. Sinno can adjust selected muscles in the eyelid for an improved result. The very fine incision runs along the natural crease in the eyelid and outward to just beyond the corner of the eye. A strip of excess skin is removed, and underlying tissues are altered to create a smoother, more youthful appearance. Dr. Mustoe’s and Dr. Sinno’s patients experience little to no visible scarring from this procedure, and the natural shape of the eye remains unchanged, so results are noticeable but natural.

How Is Lower Eyelid Surgery Performed?

Lower Eyelid Surgery Diagram

Lower Eyelid Surgery Incision

To correct excess, wrinkled or “baggy” skin and fatty deposits in the lower lids, lower eyelid surgery is performed. Our surgeons’ approach is to always address the fatty deposits and aging changes through a transconjunctival approach which eliminates muscle injury and minimizes the risk of changing eyelid shape. There is no external scar at all. Fat can be removed, contoured or repositioned through this approach. When indicated, the muscle can be tightened and skin removed through a separate incision just below the eyelashes, which does not leave a visible scar.

How Should I Prepare for Eyelid Surgery?

Your surgeon and his team will give you detailed instructions to follow before your eyelid surgery. These will include avoiding certain medications that encourage bleeding and bruising, stopping smoking weeks before surgery, and preparing your home for your recovery. It’s usually good to make sure you take care of any errands in the days before your procedure and pick up prescriptions. We will provide you with specific details about what to wear on the day of your procedure and when to stop eating and drinking the day before.
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What Is Eyelid Surgery Recovery Like?

Due to Dr. Mustoe’s extensive research into wound healing and scar prevention, his and Dr. Sinno’s blepharoplasty patients benefit from a shorter and more comfortable recovery. The techniques Dr. Mustoe has developed over his many years of experience cause less tissue trauma, which aids in comfort and faster healing. In addition, the use of local anesthesia with sedation also helps to minimize bruising and bleeding and to shorten recovery time. Most of Dr. Mustoe’s and Dr. Sinno’s blepharoplasty patients can return to social activities or work within 7 to 10 days. There is little pain, and over-the-counter medications are typically enough to manage discomfort.

To visit Dr. Mustoe or Dr. Sinno in Chicago for eyelid surgery, request a consultation online or call us at (312) 788-2560 and one of our helpful staff members will schedule your appointment.

Eyelid Surgery FAQs

How Much Does Eyelid Surgery Cost?

In the Chicago area, the cost of eyelid surgery is usually between $3,000 and $6,000. This varies depending on the particulars of your procedure, such as whether you get upper or lower eyelid surgery or both. We will discuss your particular costs during your consultation.

How Long Does Bruising Last After Eyelid Surgery?

Our surgeons’ techniques minimize bruising, which is largely resolved within a week and fully resolved in 10 days for most patients. For the occasional patient who has more bruising or who desires an accelerated recovery, we now offer a state-of-the-art laser treatment which dramatically improves bruising with one brief treatment performed during a postoperative visit.

Will My Eyelid Surgery Results Look Natural?

Yes. Dr. Mustoe and Dr. Sinno are among the most experienced and renowned plastic surgeons in the Chicago area, and their eyelid surgery results are remarkable. They take a subtle and conservative approach to facial rejuvenation to ensure that your results look natural, rather than “overdone.” The eyelid shape will not change, and the results make a patient look rested rather than different, even in men without the aid of makeup. Many of his blepharoplasty patients have reported that they get compliments on looking rested, but others can’t tell they’ve had anything done.

Will My Eyelid Surgery Scars Be Obvious?

No. For lower eyelid surgery, Dr. Mustoe and Dr. Sinno can hide your incisions within your lower eyelid, so there is absolutely no visible scar. For upper eyelid procedures, they hide the incisions in the natural folds of the eyelid skin, making them practically invisible. Additionally, Dr. Mustoe has extensively researched wound healing and scar prevention, and he and Dr. Sinno use careful surgical techniques to keep your incisions fine and help them heal rapidly.

How Long Will My Eyelid Surgery Results Last?

Although no cosmetic surgery can completely stop the aging process, blepharoplasty can restore a more youthful look that lasts many many years. You can help to maintain your results by practicing good sun protection habits and adopting a skincare regimen. You can also use minimally invasive procedures such as laser treatments, fat grafting, and injectables in the years following your eyelid surgery to make your rejuvenation last as long as possible.

Can Eyelid Surgery Be Combined With Other Procedures?

Many of Dr. Mustoe’s and Dr. Sinno’s patients choose to have their blepharoplasty results enhanced with laser skin resurfacing around the eyes. This treatment is very effective for smoothing fine wrinkles and improving skin tone in the eye area. When patients desire improvement to the lower portion of the face as well, your surgeon can combine this procedure with facelift and neck lift surgery. Your surgeon will discuss all of your eyelid rejuvenation options with you in detail, and work with you to develop a treatment plan that will achieve your goals.

Are There Any Alternatives to Eyelid Surgery?

There are some procedures that can improve the look of wrinkles and skin tone around the eyes, but for removal of drooping, excess skin, eyelid surgery is the best option. Dr. Mustoe and Dr. Sinno sometimes recommend injections of BOTOX® Cosmetic, fat grafting, or, dermal fillers to smooth away wrinkles in the eye area and laser resurfacing for improving tone. They may also recommend combining your eyelid surgery with a brow lift for a complete rejuvenation of the upper face. Our surgeons have developed their own technique for brow lift surgery, which can be done under local anesthesia with light sedation in the office, with incisions limited to the temple area and no need for hair removal. Your surgeon will discuss all these options and any other treatments he may recommend during your consultation.