Eyelid Surgery in Washington, DC

What is Eyelid Surgery (Blepharoplasty)?

An eyelid lift removes excess fat and skin from the upper and lower eyelids, correcting drooping upper lids and reducing puffy bags below your eyes. At West End Plastic Surgery in Washington, D.C., eyelid surgery is one of the most popular procedures performed by Dr. Lexie Wang & Dr. Paul Ruff. If you are considering eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty) in the Washington, D.C. area, request a consultation online to meet our surgeons, or call our office at  202-785-4187 to schedule an appointment.

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Am I a Good Candidate for an Eyelid Lift?

An ideal candidate for an eyelid lift is someone in general good health, who has realistic expectations about the procedure, and who has one or more of the following characteristics. Most candidates are 35 years of age or older, but if your droopy eyelids are an inherited condition you may decide to have the surgery at a younger age.

  • Puffy areas or “bags” under the eyes
  • Excessive skin or sagging of your upper eyelids
  • Excessive skin on your lower eyelids
  • Loss of your natural upper eyelid crease

Your Consultation With Your Plastic Surgeon

Prior to scheduling your eyelid lift, you will have an extensive consultation with Dr. Wang or Dr. Ruff. The goals of the consultation are to evaluate your facial structure to determine whether an eyelid lift will give you the facial enhancement you desire and to assess your specific risks for the procedure. Your plastic surgeon will thoroughly explain the procedure and its expected results and answer any questions you have. They may also recommend combining your eyelid lift with another procedure, such as a brow lift, to meet your cosmetic goals. The type of anesthesia to be used and cost and payment information will also be discussed. You will be asked to provide a medical history and explain the results you hope to achieve with an eyelid lift.

Your plastic surgeon along with the team at West End Plastic Surgery will:

  • Test your vision and assess your tear production
  • Review the various eyelid lift options with you
  • Clearly discuss the potential risks of the procedure
  • Outline in detail how the surgery is performed and what you can expect before, during, and after the procedure
  • Provide detailed cost and payment information
  • Answer all your questions

You will be asked to provide:

  • Details about your medical history
  • A list of all medications you currently take, including over-the-counter medications such as aspirin, vitamins, and herbal supplements
  • Information regarding your tobacco and alcohol use

How Much Does a Blepharoplasty (Eyelid Lift) Cost in Washington, DC?

The cost of a Blepharoplasty (Eyelid Lift) starts at around $4,500. The price will vary depending on the extent of treatment necessary to deliver your desired results. During your consultation, our surgeons will assess your cosmetic goals and develop a treatment plan tailored to meet them. The starting price is provided for your convenience, and it is important to note that it does not encompass facility or anesthesia fees. The comprehensive cost, inclusive of all potential fees, will be confirmed during your visit.

We also offer financing options, including CareCredit® and Alphaeon®, to help you with the cost of your cosmetic surgery.

In this video, Dr. Lexie Wang is performing a Blepharoplasty and Brow Lift:

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We’re as thrilled with our patients’ results as they are. Check out our before-and-after photo gallery and see for yourself the kind of work our talented surgeons do.

Blepharoplasty Procedure

Your eyelid lift procedure will be performed in our state-of-the-art surgical suite. The procedure generally takes 1 to 3 hours to complete depending on how extensive it is. The surgery is usually performed using local anesthesia with sedation. You may feel a bit of tugging around your eyelid area but will experience no discomfort. General anesthesia can be used if you would rather be completely asleep during the procedure.

Your doctor makes small incisions following the natural lines of your eyelids. These incisions are made in the creases of your upper lids and just below the lashes of your lower lids or inside the lower lids. The incisions may extend into the crow’s feet or laugh lines at the outer corners of the eyes. Working through these incisions, your doctor separates the skin from underlying tissue and muscle, removes excess fat, and trims any sagging skin and muscle. If you are having all 4 eyelids done, your doctor will work on the upper lids first, then the lower ones. The incisions are then closed with very small stitches. Ointment is placed in your eyes and bandages are placed over your eyes for the first 24 hours after surgery.

The type of anesthesia used and the anticipated length of your procedure will be discussed with you at your initial consultation. In most cases, the surgery is performed on an outpatient basis and you go home shortly after the procedure. If your eyelid lift is extensive (or combined with other procedures), a stay of 1 to 2 nights in the hospital may be required.

In this video, Dr. Lexie Wang is performing a Blepharoplasty, Brow Lift, Rhinoplasty, and Chin Implant:

What to Expect During Eyelid Surgery Recovery

Watch TV or Read 2 to 3 Days After Surgery
Wear Makeup Around the Eyes 7 to 10 Days After Surgery
Stitches Removed 2 to 7 Days After Surgery
Back to Work or School 7 to 10 Days After Surgery
Driving As Soon as You Feel Comfortable
Wear Contact Lenses 2 to 3 Weeks After Surgery
Strenuous Activity 3 Weeks After Surgery
Fading of Scars Several Months to 1 Year

Immediately After Your Surgery

In most cases, eyelid lift surgery is performed on an outpatient basis and you go home shortly after the surgery. You may be sleepy from the anesthesia and your eyelids will feel tight and sore as the anesthesia wears off. Pain medication will help you control this discomfort. It is important to have someone drive you home after surgery and to stay with you for the first few days after surgery. Your eyes also will appear bruised. Bruising varies among patients and usually reaches its peak during the first week after surgery. The discoloration disappears 2 to 4 weeks after your eyelid lift.

The First 24 to 48 Hours After Your Surgery

In the first few days after surgery, your eyes will most likely feel sticky and itchy, and you may experience a burning sensation. Your eyelids also may feel dry and tight. You may also have some numbness along your lash line. Your discomfort level will improve rapidly after the first 2 days, but it is still important to keep regular activities to a minimum for the first 3 to 5 days after your procedure.

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There may be some bruising and swelling around your eyes. You can use cold compresses (a medium-sized bag of frozen peas works well) to help reduce these conditions. You may have slight bleeding from your incisions. This is nothing to worry about and can usually be controlled by firmly holding a pad or sponge on the area for 10 to 20 minutes. You can clean off any dried or clotted blood with soap and water or diluted peroxide. If the bleeding does not stop, call West End Plastic Surgery for further instructions.

The First 2 Weeks After Surgery

In most cases, eyelid lift surgery is performed on an outpatient basis and you go home shortly after the surgery. You may be sleepy from the anesthesia and your eyelids will feel tight and sore as the anesthesia wears off. Pain medication will help you control this discomfort. It is important to have someone drive you home after surgery and to stay with you for the first few days after surgery. Your eyes also will appear bruised. Bruising varies among patients and usually reaches its peak during the first week after surgery. The discoloration disappears 2 to 4 weeks after your eyelid lift.

Resuming Your Normal Routine

Everyone heals at different rates, and you are the best judge of when you are ready for certain activities, but the following are general guidelines:

  • You may read or watch TV within 3 days of your surgery.
  • You can most likely return to work or school within 7 to 10 days after your surgery.
  • You may resume driving as soon as you feel comfortable doing so.
  • You can most likely return to your physical exercise program within 3 weeks of your eyelid lift. Our patients are encouraged to plan an exercise program and discuss it with the staff prior to resuming exercise.
  • Your scars may look slightly pink for 6 months, sometimes longer. Eventually, the scars will fade to a nearly invisible white line. Tiny whiteheads may appear after your stitches are taken out and they can be easily removed and cause no scarring.
  • The scars caused by the incision should be protected from sunlight for at least a year after surgery.
  • Your eyes will be sensitive to sunlight, wind, or other airborne irritants for several weeks after your surgery. Wear sunglasses, along with a special eyelid sun block whenever you are outside.

Things to Be Aware of After Your Surgery

  • It is normal to experience blurry or double vision for a few days after your eyelid procedure.
  • After surgery, some people have minor trouble closing their eyes to sleep.
  • The nerves of the lower eyelid may be temporarily affected by the surgery, causing sagging of the margin of the eyelid. This condition usually corrects itself within a few days or weeks. Upward massage and support of the eyelid itself with tape can help the healing process.

Blepharoplasty Results

Eyelid lift surgery can enhance the youthful appearance of your eyes. These results generally last between 5 to 10 years and longer in many cases. It is important to keep in mind that the effects of aging, gravity, and environmental factors will eventually cause sagging and drooping of the eyelid area.

Eyelid Lift Risks

All surgical procedures have some degree of risk; however, major complications from eyelid lift surgery are unusual. During your initial consultation with Dr. Ruff and the staff of West End Plastic Surgery, your individual risks will be assessed and discussed. As with any surgery, you can help reduce the risks by closely following the pre- and post-surgery instructions provided to you. Your doctor and the staff of the practice will be with you every step of the way to ensure a safe and pleasing outcome. Most likely risks include the following:

  • Infection
  • Dry eyes
  • Inability to close eyes
  • Loss of asymmetry of the eyes
  • Scarring
  • Sagging of the lower eyelid (ectropion)
  • Hematoma (blood collection)
  • Asymmetry

Eyelid Surgery FAQs:

Can an eyelid lift be combined with our cosmetic procedures?

An eyelid lift is often performed in conjunction with a brow lift or a mid-facelift to provide a smoother, more youthful look to the face. Many patients have blepharoplasty in conjunction with body contouring.

Is eyelid lift surgery covered by insurance?

In most cases, eyelid lift surgery is considered cosmetic surgery and, therefore, is not covered by insurance. You are responsible for the full payment of the procedure. Cost and payment information will be fully discussed with you during your initial consultation. In rare instances, insurance will cover the cost of an eyelid lift if it is considered medically necessary to improve vision that is impaired due to overhanging eyelid skin or drooping of the upper eyelid itself (ptosis).

Are there alternatives to eyelid lift surgery?

Injections of BOTOX® Cosmetic can be a temporary, non-surgical alternative to an eyelid lift. These injections can reduce or eliminate wrinkling skin around the eyes by blocking the nerve impulses to temporarily paralyze the muscles that cause wrinkles. Meticulous medically directed skin care may also improve the skin tone, skin coloring, and reduce the appearance of wrinkles. Laser resurfacing and chemical peels are less invasive but very effective method to improve tone, wrinkles, and even contour.

How Noticeable Are Eyelid Surgery Scars?

While the results of your blepharoplasty will be very eye-catching, your scars will be virtually invisible after your healing process! With decades of combined experience, your team at West End Plastic Surgery are certified experts in hiding and minimizing incision scars. The incisions may look slightly pink for up to six months or longer. But eventually, these scars fade to a thin white or flesh-colored scar that most patients cannot even identify. It is important to protect your scars from sunlight for at least one year after your procedure to prevent darkening.

How Long Do the Results from Eyelid Surgery Last?

Your results will depend on the type of eyelid procedure that you have. The results of a lower blepharoplasty, an eyelid surgery performed on the lower lids, can last 5 to 10 years, or sometimes even longer. An upper eyelid correction can last roughly five to seven years. While cosmetic procedures can turn back the clock to create a rejuvenated and youthful appearance, it is important to remember the natural aging process does not stop. Aging, gravity and some environmental factors will eventually cause the results of your eyelid surgery to fade over time.

What is the Best Age to Have Eyelid Surgery?

There is no right or wrong age to consider eyelid surgery! On average, individuals who choose eyelid surgery are 35 years of age or older. But patients choose to have the procedure for a variety of reasons. For example, if your droopy eyelids are the result of a past injury or are an inherited condition, you may decide the surgery is right for you at a younger age.

Can You Fix Eyelids Without Surgery?

Drooping and sagging around the eyes, often associated with one of the first signs of aging, is a common complaint we hear from patients. Simple lifestyle choices are important for maintaining your skin’s health, such as staying hydrated, using appropriate sunscreen, and getting adequate sleep. Certain cosmetic products like eye creams can also improve the appearance of droopy eyelids by providing hydration and increasing skin elasticity. Non-surgical cosmetic treatments can include dermal fillers such as Botox and Dysport or laser resurfacing. However, surgical correction is the only solution for long-term results that do not require regular treatment or repeat procedures.

Schedule a Consultation

If you’re in the Washington, D.C. area and considering an Eyelid Lift, contact West End Plastic Surgery. Request a consultation online or call our office at  202-785-4187 to schedule a consultation.


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