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Laser Blepharoplasty Vs. Surgery

I want to have Blepharoplasty for the upper and lower eyelids. I have 2 choices of technique: by laser or by scalpel. Which one is better and last longer?

Doctor Answers (49)

Laser surgery can heal with faster recovery


I have been using the CO2 laser for eyelid surgery since 1992. It coagulates as it cuts, and so there is definitely less bruising after surgery. Studies have shown less bruising and faster recovery, but an equal outcome after the passage of time. I think doctors who feel that laser surgery is no better than scalpel surgery should not give an opinion if they have not had experience with both modalities. I have done both, and still do scalpel surgery when teaching the residents how to do eyelid surgery at hospitals that do not have a CO2 laser. I would not go back to scalpel surgery unless I had to. I find the surgery much more simple and elegant, with better visualization of what I am doing, and a faster recovery with less bruising. There is essentially NO laser-related complication when the surgeon is used to using this tool.

Staten Island Oculoplastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

Laser vs. Scalpel for Blepharoplasty


A laser can be used as a cutting tool just like a scalpel. A laser placed in the wrong hands can produce major problems, but in the proper hands can be safely used as a tool in blepharoplasty. Therefore, one is not necessarily better than the other. Lasers seem elegant to the general public and are generally marketing ploys to attract patients for blepharoplasty (and other) surgery. The experience of the surgeon is a more important factor in surgery than the tool employed!

James M. Kurley, MD
Champaign Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Laser Blepharoplasty Vs. Surgery


A good Blepharoplasty can be performed using the laser or scalpel.  There are also other instruments that can be used like an Ellman unit or Colorado needle.  The ultimate goal is to get the best result with the least amount of bleeding and swelling.  The most important factor is your surgeon.  Your surgeon probably has tried multiple techniques and uses the one that gives him the best results with the least complications.  Ultimately, your surgeon needs to make that decision.

Sam Goldberger, MD
Beverly Hills Oculoplastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

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Laser vs. Scalpel: It's the Surgeon's Skill That Matters Most


It is rare that either laser or scalpel will have special advantage in Blepharoplasty: this has been studied widely and there is no appreciable difference in quality of results or recovery time, even though there have been claims that seem to indicate otherwise.

The skill (and therefore, the preference) of your surgeon is what matters most in assuring you the best possible results.

Paul C. Zwiebel, MD
Denver Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

Results from "Laser" blepharoplasty is the same as scalpel.


Blepharoplasty has the same reults whether done with laser or scalpel as the "cutting" instrument. The technique your surgeon has the most experirnce with will probably give the best results.

Debra Irizarry, MD
Crestone Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 3 reviews

Laser is a tool, just like the scalpel


A laser is simply a surgical tool. It is used to cut skin and coagulate blood vessels. Both can be done with various surgical instruments (scalpel or laser) equally well. It really depends on the type of tools your surgeon prefers to use. I would make your decision about which surgeon to choose based on which one you feel understands your goals and most specializes in this type of surgery. Ask to see before and after photos and speak to friends who have had the procedures, before you make your decision.

Thomas Buonassisi, MD
Vancouver Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 56 reviews

No difference between laser and scalpel for blepharoplasty


The idea of using a laser instead of a scalpel for blepharoplasty has been around for at least 15 years, and no real benefits have been convincingly demonstrated with the laser. There are a number of uses for lasers that do justify the additional expense, but this probably isn't one of them.

Richard Baxter, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 23 reviews

Laser blepharoplasty

For the additional cost to the patient, laser blepharoplasty may not provide any added benefit in the long term. What is important is the experience and skill of your surgereon with either modality. Lasers for other facial rejuvenation (e.g. laser skin resurfacing), can provide a tremendous added benefit and can often be performed at the time of blepharoplasty or other facial surgery.

Malena Amato, MD
Austin Oculoplastic Surgeon

Laser Blepharoplasty

Lasers when used for blepharoplasty are used exactly the same as a surgical scalpel.  If there is any advantage, it will relate to the lack of immediate bleeding only when making the incisions.  Remember that there are many ways to gently control the bleeding that occurs regardless of the instrument used.  

I have experience using the scalpel as well as the laser and personally prefer the "cold" or scalpel technique.  The most critical factor will be finding an experienced surgeon who is knowledgable about your individual needs and performs eyelid surgeries frequently.

Best Regards, 

Todd Hobgood, MD

Todd Christopher Hobgood, MD
Phoenix Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Laser Blepharoplasty Vs. Surgery

Upper blepharoplasty, also known as eyelid lift surgery, helps improve the shape of the eyelids by rejuvenating their appearance. The surgical technique conventionally uses a scalpel to remove skin and soft tissues and additional instruments to reduce bleeding and swelling. Laser blepharoplasty technique uses laser to remove skin and soft tissues, it has the benefit of as it cuts it immediately stops bleeding thus offer patients benefit of less bruising and swelling after surgery. Many surgeons do not have access to such a laser and are not able to offer laser blepharoplasty to their patients. In addition to the surgical devise, blepharoplasty is a delicate surgery and should be tailored to the individual dependent on your individual eyelid changes and facial ageing.  
As important as the surgical technique is the Assessment of the eyelids is important to exclude other factors that may be influencing the position of the upper eyelids including ptosis, dry eyes, thyroid eye disease. Ptosis is a condition where the fine muscle that elevated the eyelid has become weak or detached and this requires a ptosis correction surgery to improve. Dry eyes and patients who have undergone previous laser refractive surgery should have an evaluation to exclude dry eyes before considering upper eyelid surgery.

Julian De Silva, MD
London Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.