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Will I Have Visible Scars from Eyelid Surgery?

scarring from blepharoplasty information is appreciated

Doctor Answers 88

Scarring from blepharoplasty

There should not be visible scarring after eyelid surgery. Check before and after photos carefully. View dozens of images in a closeup and from multiple angles. The most common problem from blepharoplasty is the overly-aggressive removal of skin and fat. be sure you select a plastic surgery who can provide multiple examples of beautiful and natural results. 

Raleigh-Durham Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 66 reviews

Techniques and tips for reducing eyelid surgery scars:

Upper and lower eyelid surgery scars are among the best scars a patient can receive, IF the surgeon uses precise technique, fine sutures, proper incision location, and the patient follows post-op directions well.

Upper eyelid incision are hidden by the lid fold (except in Asian patients, who may not have this fold). Care must be taken by the surgeon to not go too high, too low, or too far laterally near the crows-foot area, or the scar may be more visible. Likewise, too much skin removal can cause excessive tension on the closure and affect healing adversely. I mark and measure my patients pre-operatively while upright and alert (no medication or sedation on-board) to determine the accurate true amount of skin excess to remove. Finally, the choice of suture material and closure technique can influence the scar's quality. I use a very fine (6-0) monofilament nonabsorbable suture woven from inside the skin incision edge to the other side of the skin incision edge (subcuticular closure) and left in one piece for both lids. When it is ready to be removed in a week or so, I simply slide the suture from the skin by pulling from the center where the stitch is exposed. Minimal discomfort, no cross-hatch marks, great scar (but somewhat more difficult to do). Many surgeons simply use an easy over-and-over baseball stitch and remove it before it leaves (bad) marks, but it can leave tiny suture hole scars or cross-hatch marks if it is too tight, left in too long, or if the patient has more swelling than "average." Sleeping with your head elevated above heart level for at least two weeks helps keep swelling to a minimum. The same goes for avoidance of lifting, straining, or vomiting after surgery!

Lower eyelids are even more tricky to do well, and even skilled, experienced surgeons can have difficulties with proper tension, lid position, and scarring (not just the visible skin scar, but the ones beneath the surface that can pull or distort the lid during healing). At least the skin scar can be virtually invisible, if the scar is placed just below the eyelashes--not several millimeters below, which I commonly see (to avoid cutting the eyelashes, or just out of habit), but adjacent to the eyelashes. This is hard to do properly and involves utilizing a pointy scalpel blade directed from below the skin upwards, which allows the surgeon to place the incision much closer to the eyelashes, giving a scar which heals better than virtually all others.  When I use this special technique for external lower eyelid incisions, I use very tiny absorbable sutures for closure. These dissolve within a week, do not leave a mark, and do not require trying to decide what is an eyelash and what is a suture (for removal). Of course, if you only have a tiny amount of fat to be removed, the incision can be hidden inside the eyelid, and this is completely invisible. But this incision does not allow any lid tightening or skin/muscle smoothing.

Even with "standard" methods, eyelid scars heal beautifully for the vast majority of patients and surgeons, usually even if you form bad scars elsewhere. But with these tips and techniques, I believe scars can be even better.

Richard H. Tholen, MD, FACS
Minneapolis Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 187 reviews

Eyelid scars are minimal and fade well with time

Because eyelid skin is very thin and delicate, usually eyelid scars fade well. besides there are usually positioned in the eyelid crease and extend into the crows feet, therefore, they don't show much.

S. Sean Younai, MD, FACS
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 34 reviews

Bleph scars are favorable

The thin skin of the upper and lower lids is very favorable when it comes to scars.  Every incision has to leave a scar, but these areas heal better than most if not all other body sites.  The upper lid incision sits in the natural crease where the eyelid folds as you open and close.  That means it often tricks the viewers mind to think it is just the crease.  The lower lid incision is so close to the lower lashes that it too is virtually hidden.  The only thing to keep in mind is that the upper lid skin in particular, especially laterally, will take a long time for allthe irregularities to settle.  So I counsel my patients to remain patient, since small lumps and bumps that are a normal part of healing will all resolve over 6-12 months.

Kevin Robertson, MD
Madison Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

Hidden scars in blepharoplasty

All surgery produces scars but the scars from blepharoplasty should be nearly invisible due to their location directly in the crease of the upper eyelid and just barely beneath the lashes of the lower eyelid.  The skin/dermis of the lids is also very thin and typically heaals with very minimal scars.  Rarely will a patient, who is genetically predisposed to abnormal scarring, have a firm or red/raised scar develop.  There are a variety of treatments available to correct  this, should it occur                                                                                                                        

Scars from Blepharoplasty

You will always have scars from any procedure that you have. What makes plastic surgery an art is how to do them so that they are not so noticeable. That is were you need to find an experience Facial Plastic Surgeon for your procedure.

You will always know were your incisions are, specially if they are done trans-cutaneously, but this should not be the concern. Eyelids is one of the areas of the body that heals the best and usually does not bring a lot of scaring.

Gustavo A. Diaz, MD
Charlotte Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 14 reviews

Scars are typically minimal

The eyelid skin is the thinnest in the body, typically correlating with fairly imperceptible scars.

With upper eyelid surgery, the only exception to this rule is if the incision is carried too far toward the nose (where the skin is thicker), a webbing effect can occur. This is an easy complication to prevent. Small whitehead or milia can occur after eyelid surgery, but are easy to treat without major adverse sequellae.

Lower eyelid surgery is vastly more complicated than upper eyelid surgery since the lower lid has less support (accounting for only 5% of eyelid closure). If skin is to be removed, it must be done in a tension free environment to prevent a rounding effect, or pull-down of the lower eyelid (known as ectropion). Some patients are really not good candidates for lower lid procedures due to a lack of support in the cheek area (termed a negative vector). To determine this, a thorough consultation with a surgeon experienced in eyelid surgery is necessary.

Stephen Prendiville, MD
Fort Myers Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 57 reviews

Blepharoplasty and scars

Fortunately scars are not a big problem with blepharoplasty. Often they are hidden in the eyelid crease or fade with time. Transconjunctival blepharoplasty allows the surgeon  to enter from behind the eyelid aboiding issues of scars. See an eyelid specialist (oculoplastic surgeon) to discuss. 

Will I have visible scars from eyelid surgery?

Hello! Thank you for the question!  You will have scars after any incision is made, but eyelid scars are made to be inconspicuous. Scars from this procedure, when properly placed, should be virtually imperceptible once fully healed.  It is common for scars to fully mature for up to a year. In the meantime, there are a few things that may help to ameliorate your incision/scar. The most proven (as well as cheapest) modality is simple scar massage. Applying pressure and massaging the well-healed scar has been shown to improve the appearance as it breaks up the scar tissue, hopefully producing the finest scar as possible. Other things that have been shown to add some benefit, albeit controversial, are silicone sheets, hydration, and topical steroids. In addition, avoidance of direct sunlight to the incision will significantly help the appearance as they tend to discolor with UV light during the healing process.

If unsightly scars are still present after approximately a year's time, other things that your surgeon may consider are intralesional steroid injections, laser, or just surgical revision of the scar itself.

Hope that this helps! Best wishes!

Lewis Albert Andres, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 14 reviews

Scarring Following Blepharoplasty

                  Anytime an incision is made, scarring will occur to some degree. The eyelid is an area where scarring is usually minimal and the scars are well hidden in this location. It usually takes about twelve months for scars to reach maximum recovery.

                  Local wound care can minimize the potential for adverse scarring following surgery. In the immediate post-operative period, removing sutures in a timely manner can minimize adverse scarring. Avoiding crusting and scabbing of the eyelids by keeping them lubricated with ointment can minimize indentations in the scar. Avoidance of infections can minimize hypertrophic scarring and spread of the scars.

                  When these steps are followed, most patients have excellent healing with almost inperceptable scarring. Occasionally, wound healing complications can occur and secondary surgery is required, but these situations are fortunately rare. 

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.