Brow Lift and Blepharoplasty (Upper) - Lagrange, GA

Several of the reviews on this site have really...

Several of the reviews on this site have really helped me prepare for my procedure on Dec. 18, so I decided to attempt to chronicle my journey here as well. I hope it will help others. Back in June I had a field of vision test and an upper bleph was recommended and my insurance will cover that aspect of the procedure. The eye doctor said he would send me for a brow lift later because the bleph would leave my brows almost down on my eye lashes. I decided to locate a PS to do both procedures at the same time. I settled on Dr. Mel Stewart with Advanced Aesthetics in LaGrange, GA. My husband came with me to my appointments because I wanted him to be fully informed about my plans. He also likes Dr. Stewart and that is reassuring. I had my pre-op appointments last Wednesday and will pick up a variety of prescriptions today. They include an antibiotic, pain medicine, ointment for my eyes, something for nausea, and Zantac. I have also purchased a foam wedge so I can sleep in my bed with my head elevated. The headboard is already elevated about 3 inches. The wedge is about 6 inches and and I'll have a pillow on top of that. I also have frozen peas for icing and extra gauze. I have also purchased some extra heavy concealer for when I can apply make-up.

My apprehensions include the discomfit, swelling, and not being able to wash my hair for a week. I usually wash it daily! I did purchase a black felt hat to wear if someone comes for a visit. I can't bear the thoughts of visitors seeing my stringy, dirty hair. I so wish I could fast forward two weeks and have this behind me!

Surgery Day - December 18, 2013

The surgery lasted over 3 hours! My poor husband was getting more and more anxious as we expected about half that time. When I woke up in recovery I was desperately sick. Of course they gave me something to melt under my tongue. It seems I had put on the nausea patch incorrectly. I had peeled off only one of the two plastic sheets protecting the medicine patch itself. I was wrapped all around the head and they had put some kind of gel in my hair to hold it in place away from the incisions . My hair feels like straw.

Day After Surgery - December 19, 2013

I felt sick and weak all day. I could hardly choke down a cracker to take my pain pill. I had to take Phenegram (sp?) tablets all day. Late in the day I had to return to my doctor's office for him to remove the bandages. He said everything looks good but unfortunately they were not able to completely even up the uneven brows. They are definitely closer to the same level, but still a little off. He was happy with my lack of swelling and said for me to keep doing the same thing with the icing and head elevation. Then he told me to come back in four days (Monday). That was not in the original plans and I don't know exactly why he wants to see me again. I was too fuzzy with the pain meds to ask questions.

When I got home I felt so exhausted. I fell asleep and woke in an hour to more vomiting. Why or why did I do this to myself?!

Day 3

I feel much better today! I can eat and use the computer and watch TV without getting sick. The main problem today is increased swelling of my eyes. I think it is due to the removal of the bandages yesterday and I may have slid too far down my wedge pillow so there was not enough elevation during the night. I am using the ice pack more frequently today.

Day 4

I still feel good, but the swelling is worse. I set my timer religiously all day and iced 20 minutes out of EVERY hour. By bedtime the swelling was down a good bit. I did cook a simple dinner tonight but only with the wonderful assistance of my sweet hubby. Dinner was good but it was hard for me to think clearly during the preparations. Am hoping this mental fuzz clears up before Christmas Day because I plan to have a family dinner that day!

Day 5

Swelling and bruising has dropped into my jowls. I still feel fuzzy.

Day 6

I have felt kind of weak and lifeless today. I had to return to the doctor's office this afternoon where he removed the steri-strips from the outer corner of my eyes. My entire face is yellow where the bruising has spread and is healing. My friend says I'm turning into a Smurf!

The doctor seemed happy with my progress. We asked why the left eye doesn't open as wide as the right and he responded that the eye muscle is weak. We knew this before my surgery but I had no idea it would be even more pronounced afterwards. I expected it to look better! I am not happy with a "lazy eye" appearance and fear another surgery will be needed to correct it. Am feeling very nervous and anxious now.

I will go back the day after Christmas to have stitches and staples removed. Then home to wash my hair. I can hardly wait for that!

Stitches Out!

Today was the big day to get the stitches and half the staples out! My appointment was 8:00, but I was done by 8:00! The doctor was waiting on me when I arrived. His assistant had the day off and he had everything ready for me! I’m amazed. It was wonderful to get the stitches out of my eyelids. Also, with half the staples gone, I don’t feel so tight. Then back home to wash the hair! Oh, happy day! Little did I know what was in store for me. . . . . .

I stood under warm water for several minutes, then applied tons of conditioner and worked it through. That’s when I noticed chunks of my hair coming out in my hands! The drain got stopped up over and over and had to be cleaned of the hair. It finally occurred to me that everywhere he made an incision in my scalp, the hair was cut! They had sectioned off the hair and twisted it into these tight little rows, but cutting the hair was unavoidable. So I proceeded on with two washings and more conditioner. I stepped out of the shower confident and ready to finally style my hair. Oh, no!!!!!!! My careful washing had not even touched chunks of sticky dried blood. Argh! I spent the next hour combing chunks of blood from the roots of my hair. I still have one strip of hair that looks like it was dyed red, but am too tired to return to the shower for more washing. It will just have to wait until tomorrow.

That said, my eyes look good to me! The eyebrows look even and the flaps of skin are completely gone from my eye lids! I think the surgery was a success!

Looking Great!

It has been two weeks and one day since the surgery and I feel great! This morning the doctor removed the remaining staples and said everything is healing nicely. There is still a tiny bit of puffiness, but that is so minor. I also have numbness in my scalp and I'm not sure that the feeling ever comes totally back. My forehead is smooth and my eyes are no longer squinty. My brows are much more level than before. I see the doctor again in 3 weeks. He took some before pictures and will take after pictures at some point. I have given him permission to use them for whatever. I mentioned to Dr. Stewart that I was impressed by how close the incision is to my hairline. Since my forehead is so high, he did not want to place the incision back into the hair and pull it up even further. So the incision is right at the hairline. He said he hopes that placement will allow hair to actually grow in the scar which will camouflage it even more!

One Month Check-Up

Today I visited the doctor for my one month check-up. My right eye is healing nicely but the left eyelid has 3 little pooches. He discovered a stitch was still in and once he removed it, two of the pooches went smooth! Amazing! He recommended a Mederma cream for the scar on my scalp from the brow lift. The incision is healing nicely, but the cream will speed things up. He said my hair is already growing through the scar which is good news.

The downside of the visit is that my left eyelid needs a little more skin removed for best results. The left eye was always more droopy and it still is. I have an appointment in 3 weeks for him to do this. It will be in his office under local anesthetic and will take about 30 minutes. He says I can drive myself home afterwards. I will have stitches again for a week.

Dr. Stewart feels like I will be completely happy with the results once this correction is made. I am already so much happier with how I look and have no doubt that this correction is the right thing to do.

Left Eye Repair 2 Months Post Surgery

I had a little more skin removed from my left eyelid last week. It was a minor procedure performed in the doctor's office. The hardest part were the 3 injections to numb the lid. After that, I could not even feel the cut or the sutures. It didn't take long at all before I was on my way home. I had a little swelling when I got home that I kept ice on. I believe it was mostly from the injections. I have had no bruising to the eye at all. I even drove myself 4 hours the next day for a little vacation at the beach!

The stitches come out in two days and I expect to be even more happy with the way my eyes look.
Dr. Mel Stewart

I cannot say enough good things about Dr. Stewart. He is a board certified general surgeon and a board certified plastic surgeon. He is articulate and very good at anticipating your questions. He explains things so thoroughly that you are really left with few questions. He is relaxed and never in a rush to get you out. For my initial complimentary consultation visit, he took over an hour with me and even drew pictures to show me how they perform a blepharoplasty. He is always empathetic with my concerns and never treats them lightly. For example, on the morning of my surgery he expressed sympathy that I was not able to have coffee. It was such a little thing but made me feel so much better. When I went to his office the day after surgery for a follow-up visit, he made sure I was escorted straight back into an exam room. I didn't even sit down in the waiting room with other patients. Since I wasn't feeling very good at that point, this meant a lot to me.

5 out of 5 stars Overall rating
5 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
5 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
5 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
5 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
5 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
5 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
5 out of 5 stars Payment process
5 out of 5 stars Wait times
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