I Have Sight in Only One Eye. Is There an Eye Lift Procedure That Doesn't Pose Risks to my Vision?

I Have Sight in Only One Eye. Is There an Eye Lift Procedure That Doesn't Pose Risks to my Vision?

Doctor Answers 14

Eyelid Lift Risks

There is no eyelid lift that does not pose some risk of blindness. However, this risk is extremely low when the procedure is done by someone very familiar with the surgery and prevention of problems. We now know a lot about the cause of postoperative blindness and that allows us to generally prevent this catastrophic problem. I have operated on several one eye sighted individuals with absolutely no problem. Make sure whomever you choose for the surgery is very experienced.

Highlands Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 6 reviews

Risks of eyelid surgery

Although eyelid surgery carries a low possibility of serious complications including blindness, the risk is not zero.  If you consult with a plastic surgeon make sure that he or she thoroughly explores your underlying health.  Conditions such as high blood pressure and diabetes increase the risk of complications after eyelid surgery and it might be best for your to hold off on this surgery if you are not in excellent health.  After all, a single eye is carrying all the responsibility for your precious sight.

If you do decide on surgery it might be better to go for a single or a double rather than a home run.  In general, deeper and more complex eyelid procedures carry higher risk of complications than more superficial procedures such as the pinch blepharoplasty.  Sometimes adjustment of the brow position can open up the upper eyelid and avoid the need for upper eyelid surgery.

It all comes down to the information that your doctor obtains from a careful and detailed physical exam.

John Q. Cook, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

Blepharoplasty Blindness

Blindness following blepharoplasty is extremely rare........but do you really want to take the chance?  Bleeding from behind the "orbital septum" is the risk you must consider before you proceed with your bilateral cosmetic blepharoplasty!  A retro-orbital hematoma in your unimpaired eye would be catastrophic!  Think long & hard.

Robert Shumway, MD
San Diego Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

Risks of eyelid surgery

Every surgery has risks including eyelid surgery. These risks are low. It's important to go to a surgeon that has good training in this area and is someone that you feel comfortable with.  Good luck!

Keshini Parbhu, MD
Orlando Oculoplastic Surgeon
3.9 out of 5 stars 10 reviews

No eye surgery is completely without risks.

While there is always some potential risk to a patients vision with any eye surgery, it is very small when operating on the upper lids and should be minimal when operating on the lower lids, in the hands of an experienced plastic surgeon. Talk in depth with your plastic surgeon about your concerns so the safest surgery or alternative procedure can be done.

Jeffrey M. Darrow, MD
Boston Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 98 reviews

Risk incredibly low

As long as there is no attempt to remove fat from the eyelids, the risk of vision loss from eyelid surgery is exceedingly small.

A.J. Amadi, MD
Seattle Oculoplastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 38 reviews

I Have Sight in Only One Eye. Is There an Eye Lift Procedure That Doesn't Pose Risks to my Vision?

 While rare, eyelid surgery has been reported to cause blindness from bleeding that stretches the optic nerve.  Any form of Eyelid Surgery carries the risk of this rare event and in patients with sight in one eye, you must IMHO weigh the very rare risk against the wish to rejuvenate the eyes.  Aesthetically, I would attempt to find another area of your face to improve that doesn't risk your loss of sight.  

Francis R. Palmer, III, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

Visual Loss after eyelid surgery

The likelihood of visual loss is very rare, with reports published that suggest is might be even 1 in 20000 cases.  I am not aware of any of those with upper lid surgery.  So even if it has been reported, lower lid surgery is the more dangerous of the two.  The mechanism is described in other posts, and has to do with the fat manipulation during surgery.  So the bottom line is that yes blindness is a concern no matter what, but it is very small, especially with upper lids alone.

Kevin Robertson, MD
Madison Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 14 reviews

Visual disturbances following eyelid surgery

Visual disturbances are a rare risk of eyelid surgery.   The complication termed retrobulbar hematoma occurs if there is uncontrolled bleeding behind the eye.   If this places enough force on the optic nerve then blindness can occur.  Discuss this and all potential risks with your plastic surgeon.  

Jeffrey Zwiren, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

Eyelid Lifts and Risk of Blindness

The risk of blindness after blepharoplasty surgery is very rare, particularly upper eyelid lifts. This is a skin only removal surgery that if done carefully should be able to be done without risk of any vision loss. It is the removal of fat that runs the risk of retrobulbar bleeding in eyelid surgery. 

Barry L. Eppley, MD, DMD
Indianapolis Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 72 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.