50 Year Old Lower and Upper Blepharoplasty - London, GB

I had been concerned about the bags under my eyes...

I had been concerned about the bags under my eyes from my early 30s. I have a photo of myself in a buggy on a beach aged 2 years - I had bags then! I'd always told myself that, if circumstances allowed I would address this in my mid 50s. So here we are. After copious research on the Internet, starting with the Royal College of Surgeons website, leading to various individuals' websites and the safer cosmetic surgery website.

I felt 'armed' to attend Consultations. Felt like a little white bunny going out into the deep, dark forest but when I met my chosen surgeon, Charles Nduka I knew I'd found a dedicated perfectionist who would do his utmost for a good result. He let me ask millions of questions, giving me lots of time and explanations. He was very clear & upfront about limitations, expectations and possible complications. I was impressed with his glowing qualifications,the fact that he is a trustee of Facialpalsy.org.uk, (& works with facial reconstruction as an NHS consultant at the East Grinstead Queen Victoria hospital) as well as performing cosmetic surgery - one of his specialist areas being facial and Blepharoplasty. I felt very confident in his hands.

Op day!

I had upper & lower bleph (lower being transcutaneous, with the incision below the lash line due to the amount of excess skin) together with a necklift, which I may review separately, or stick a couple of photos on this review, depending on my vision quality, which comes & goes due to swelling. I had a GA with an overnight stay planned in hospital. I'm a coward and could never even contemplate anything like this without being 'out cold'! The GA left me very sick/nauseous/dizzy etc leading to a further night in hospital, but despite this if I needed to do this ever again, I'd still opt for GA. Woke up with a feeling of 'tightness' (neck, compression garment & swelling) and a definite look of ugliness! Relief I still have my eyes, they still look like mine and from the very first I can see a contour difference under the rainbow of colours adorning them, that there are no longer big hollow circles under there. Relief.... It is done.

The Neck bit! (Sorry, don't want to start a 2nd review, this was secondary to my life's wish of bag-free eyes!)

Thought I'd post a couple of 'befores' & 'currents' of my neck situation too. My update is, that I NOW HAVE A CHIN Yaaaayyy!! After reaching menopause, my throat seemed to just 'collapse' forwards giving me the appearance of an arrogant Victorian matron. Not a sought-after attribute. My Surgeon explained that due to my age and the forward-sloping posture that comes with it, that I would not achieve a perfect 90 degree angle. I never expected that anyway, but to say I am so far extremely pleased by my results would be an understatement. I'm so far, ecstatic ! Don't like touching the incisions (to the point of nearly fainting when applying Fucudin cream). Told you I was a coward! SO scared I'll sneeze & it'll all collapse again... The coward again

The missing neck photo!

Day 8 after op - stitches out last night!

After seemingly constant eye drops and watering/sensitivity for a week, I got the stitches out of my upper lids last night. Feel so much more 'normal' now. I have dissolvables under my eyes and around ears & neck for neck lift part. My surgeon said to leave the compression garment off for now as there is a patch where it has caused abrasion under my ears - that was the most uncomfortable part of it all - oh, and those blasted drains. Didn't like those one bit! Still some flashy bruising going on, but clean tapes applied, & it all looks so much better. Couldn't sleep very well without my support garment (the things we get attached to!) but glad the stitches under my chin are all well taped up so they're not strained or stretched. I want it all nice & strong under there! It's got to last a lifetime now!

Scar Scare!

Anyone who's read my comments before knows I'm a coward. I had trouble applying my scar cream behind ears, but dutifully did so with clean fingers 2-3 times a day, as instructed. Nearly fainting. But I never looked! (I didn't ever do so after giving birth 17 years ago, I felt it was on a 'need to know' basis only, so those stitches must have come and gone...) Anyway on Wed I got hubby to check & then take close up photos with iPad (that's EARS, keep up ladies, I digress a lot!) as he felt concerned & I thought I should look! I sent these to my PS & also 'Asked a Dr' on here as it was evening. Thankfully, both came back with no concerns of infection, but one used the word 'contamination'. I'm seeing my PS next Tues but he would have seen me again if I wanted. But I'd had my stitches out on Day 7 & saw him again Day 8 as I thought he'd missed one - it was a scab! (He agreed, it looked like a stitch)... So glad he's so approachable and reachable but at same time I don't want to look like 'nutty woman'. Felt confident that 2 people who would recognise an infected scar were both not concerned. I'll post these not-pretty photos, so you have it 'warts n all'. Again, it's probably down to the compression garment that really took offence to the back my ears & below. I realise now that this was the main pain after surgery.
Other concerns - wish my dissolvables under my eyes would dissolve. Spiky bits of fishing line by your eyes is not pleasant, but they seem firmly rooted -any advice re these gratefully received. I read of people 'tweezing them out', but mine are firmly staying put & this just makes my eyes sore.
Oh and I still have giant, over inflated traguses. Do these go down or are they full of all the rolled up skin that's been pulled? Can't tell if they look huge, (hard angle for me to see) but they feel enormous!
I now have perfect sight back & wonder if my constant reading over the decades had anything to do with my collapsed throat (posture etc). Perhaps we need to design a reading stand for good posture for 'ladies of a certain age'!

Day 12 Ear improvement & bruises of pure gold

My previous update earlier today showed situation on Wednesday evening (day 9 after op). There has been some improvement on back of ears since then, see photos. Bruising is appearing more now, and you can see some of the damage that the compression garment did to me under & behind ears & down neck.
I've also put a profile on - I'm not wearing'shimmer' powder- the sun did that golden/bronze/verdigris effect! I'm trying to keep everything so clean I'm not touching makeup yet. Feel improvement is very slow now, & would like that area behind ears to clear up (I'd have noticed it sooner had I been brave enough to look properly!) Front of ears is looking good, just a bubble left of scarring there - very happy with that. But look at those poor, bulbous traguses; my husband has just called them a 'great improvement' so heaven knows what they've been like! (again, my theory of 'don't look, don't see')
PS some of photos have flipped round, I hope this rights itself.

Check up, niggles answered

Saw my PS this evening, who checked out my icky incisions (which are getting better every day) & reassured me they'll take a while but are not infected and will heal just fine. Oh, & I've got to stop yanking the ear forward to get the Fucidin cream right in the crease because I open the would up again each time myself. Whoops! There's such a thing as being over-thorough, & funnily enough I do it where I deep-down want to avoid doing it at all ( i.e. touch those stitches ). My wound from the compression mask has got lots better so all my horror reading about necrosis last night was not really required... Seriously though, there are some very brave ladies out there who have had to cope with that awful situation; the fear, pain, horror, guilt, disfigurement and depression it all brings, sometimes with very unhelpful Drs who don't want to help as much as they should in case it is seen as admitting liability. Awfully sad. But also some wonderful, strong personalities out there who I take my hat off to.
I've added a couple of not-very-different photos - tapes to help healing have been reapplied, though I have only one under my chin now. I can add to that if I get swelling e.g. Early mornings. Wrinkles are reappearing on my face where my swelling has gone down (shame). Got my denim jacket out of back of wardrobe - you just can't wear a denim jacket with no chin. Wearing it proudly now with pretty summer dresses (and the huge black sunglasses and surgical tapes complete the ensemble)! Remain hopeful and positive. It is so reassuring to see the surgeon and discuss fears. He fills me with confidence and has a lovely calm, reassuring personality.

The cropped photo

1 strange thing, 1 nasty thing... Plus persistent bruising continues!

Well, 2 days after last post I was feeling really good, and went and had my finger and toes re-gelled to feel less like a hospital patient (gel removed for surgery). So on went my big sunglasses, grabbed that denim jacket I now feel able to wear now I own a chin again, and off I went. Weird thing- while I was there a woman rushed in saying "I left my denim jacket here yesterday". Didn't think anything of it, then (being the mum that had to label everything of my children's at all times ) as I had my back to the coats, my hand being held (nail painting) and limited neck mobility, I HAD to bodily turn and check, and yes, she'd left off with my 'precious' (rediscovered after 10 years) jacket! It was left to me to go charging off down the street, on my first real lone outing since surgery, after her - When I caught up she even had the audacity to say 'But the other one isn't mine'. Bloody cheek. 'Maybe, but that one IS mine'. Luckily it didn't descend to anything worse; she handed me the jacket but then strode back to the salon and took the other one!! Hmmm, felt a bit vulnerable there... Bit embarrassed to say I came home and wrote my name on it to the amusement of my (now teen) children. 'That never happens mum'. Oh yes it did, cynical son!
Other event was that on 14th Aug for no explicable reason I woke up feeling sick and vomited on empty stomach for the next 13 hours. Couldn't keep sips of water down but did keep sipping as felt this caused less trauma to stitches and platysmal repair, than empty heaving. I really hope nothing has been damaged. Didn't have a stomach upset so have no idea what caused it, it was exactly the same as post GA. It lasted from c6am to 8pm. Frightening, and I wish I knew what caused it. In the end I Phoned 111(NHS direct) but they wanted me to go to A&E (ER). Don't know about you, but forceful heaving into a bowl every 10 mins, totally weak, unable to dress or communicate due to banging headache, I didn't feel I wanted to make that into a 4 hour (minimum) public spectacle. I'd have been on the floor! A Dr later phoned back and said I'd get a home visit, but 4 hours after that, the sickness had stopped. Just as well as the 2nd Dr (that was going to do the home visit) was determined not to come out. He ended the conversation with "I'm so busy and 5 hours of vomiting sounds no reason to come out'. My obvious retort, which should have been: "I only rang you after 11 hours and when a new bruise looked like it was forming down one cheek after I've had facial surgery" was lost to my weakened brain. And obviously to the NHS Record keeping. I'm probably earmarked as a fusspot now... Anyway, next morning, the shadow down my cheek was gone (probably hollowing from lack of food and vomiting) and although I seem to have more bruising everywhere, it looks more superficial than before. Also contacted surgeon who said he'd done a 'double level repair' of my platysmal muscle so very unlikely to have torn. I hope so. Bit down I'd say, at the moment! Also, my neck seems to be relaxing more than I'd like.

Scars slowly improving, chin still good!

Thought I'd try and update those rather unpleasant images I left you with re. the scarring behind my ears. My PS inspected them, was not worried but did say they would take a while to heal. That's ok, I can't see them. Only problem is it prolongs the horror I feel each time I have to rub my finger over them with Fucidin cream on. Ooooooooer-yuk, makes me shiver even to think of it. I am getting better at it, quicknesss helps and that they are 'shallower' and healing. I'm also putting up photos of my neck as I CAN see the improvement. I didn't just have loose, excess skin, my whole contour...had no contour, no jawline. I was a melting candle! I was never promised an acute angle by my PS but I can clearly see the improvement. I wanted to keep the amazingly tight angle immediately post op, unrealistic with my shape, I think...I just hope for longevity, but will discuss this at my next appointment with PS. Still have one small tape under my right eye. I don't want scar tissue to encourage it to heal in 'wrong shape' as I'm scared of droop - it feels slightly looser than the left. I also noticed where the tape is removed from the left eye, that the scars have darkened a bit already (sunlight?). I'd rather look ugly for a month or so, if permanent healing can be improved. And with this bruising, it hardly makes things worse!! I also still apply the tape on my chin incision for same reason (plus all the vomiting, hopefully all over- I don't want to burst it open!!)

Make up starts to look ok at last & under-chin scar revealed! 4 weeks tomorrow!

I think today's the first day where I have put concealer under my eyes on bruises and not looked like a cadaver. That's always a positive, I find. I don't know how all you lucky ladies get away with it, but it clogs and lumps and just makes me look ill! Especially mineral makeup, which I thought was a miracle answer. Anyway, cloggy bits you can spot here (under right eye) are glue remnants from the tape (I won't rub it to remove).
Oh and here's the big reveal of the under-chin scar which has so far remained behind tape. I hadn't seen this properly until about 5 mins ago, mirror angles and lighting defeated me and what I can't see doesn't bother me much! I'm rather pleased with that.
And last night my daughter said my eyes were looking pretty and that she hadn't noticed it before because of the bruising. High praise indeed. Happy!

No hard work yet!

Had my 1 month update with surgeon yesterday evening. All is good. Had 2 pesky stitches removed from behind ears (dissolvable - huh!) which is a relief at last. My worries about neck relaxing were largely put to rest - I have large submandibular (salivary) glands there, and that's one of the things stopping me getting a nice 90 degree angle (along with age, posture, skin laxity) all of which I had been warned about before surgery (apart from the glands which only revealed themselves after the bullfrog neck and been tightened, they were hidden in those despicable folds)! At least it's not that my neck is 'on the slide' generally!
I did some drastic gardening yesterday, repeated chopping of long-arm shears on the neighbour's Russian Vine and had to keep stopping and shakily drinking litres of water (30 degrees - v unusual for UK). Definitely put strain on that new neck, silly me. Surgeon said no heavy work till 6 weeks, and this morning I have woken up with 2 lovely black eyes again... So upset. I hope these go quicker than the originals!

Photos removed - Please message me if you would like to see any

I was quite hesitant to post a review on here as I'm really not into blogging etc, valuing my privacy above most things! However when researching what I really needed to have done to my poor ol' baggy eyes I could not have found a more valuable and helpful resource than realself and all those contributors that had gone before me! Big thank you to everyone out there who helped me firstly to make my decision at all (when I initially stalked the website!) and then to those who helped me laugh through the ugliness, discomfort, sickness, nausea, oozy yukky-ness and lumpy-bumpiness (aka "contour issues") of the whole procedure. I will continue to heal and hope it gets better and better! I'm very pleased I did this.

8 weeks & I still have black eyes in the morning!

And in the evening... I have remained sleeping up on my little wedge pillow, with v pillow behind & 2 more in front of all that (semi-sitting) in all these weeks. My husband hasn't dared to complain! Not once have I lain flat - so why haven't my dark shadows gone? I look like a drug addict every morning & late every evening. There is gradual improvement every week.. & I mean Very gradual. I can cover this with concealer throughout the day. But I had hoped to do as all the other ladies do, and dispense with concealer after this procedure! I've read about iron deposits being left behind from the blood after bruising so will ask my surgeon about that at next visit (next week). I bet he'll tell me to be patient! Grrrrrrr. Any advice out there please?
London Plastic Surgeon

I'm very pleased with how everything has gone. Pre-op consultations and care, the surgery itself and the excellent follow up care so far. From the experience I have had so far, I cannot praise Mr Nduka, his skills and attitude highly enough. Mr Nduka works with a couple of fantastic secretaries for whom nothing is too much trouble. Elaine always responded promptly and helpfully to any query I had, throughout.

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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