Double Eyelid Surgery: A Basic Guide

Double Eyelid Surgery – What is it?

Double eyelid surgery is medically known as Upper Blepharoplasty and is used to correct any kind of defect or deformity of the eyelid. The surgery serves as both a functional and cosmetic procedure, and is conducted for many reasons; to remove excess skin from the eyelid, to tighten the surrounding support structures or to smooth out the eye muscles underneath. Another reason this surgery is performed is to give a person another eyelid. This reason is common within the Asian community, especially the Koreans. Many Korean surgeons consider having a single eyelid a congenital defect and believe everyone with only one eyelid should have double eyelid surgery to fix it!

Let’s get into the science of things. The reason single eyelids exist is that there are either few or no pieces of eyelid skin. Many women want to undergo the surgery to accentuate their eyes; making them look bigger and brighter without the hassle of applying makeup daily.

Here are two ways, both surgical and not, to achieving a double eyelid:

  1. Non-surgical
    Three words: double eyelid tape. Many people turn to this method to create an upper eyelid crease. This method is good for people who are on a budget or who dislike pain. However, the method has its shortcomings. Firstly, the adhesive found in the product can cause skin irritation in the form of rashes. Secondly, it is a chore to apply the tape or glue many times a day, on a daily basis, as they come undone easily.
  2. Surgical
    In the procedure, attachments are formed from sutures and these link the overlying upper eyelid skin to the upper eyelid muscle, creating the crease. The crease is anchored from the forming of internal scar tissue. There are two kinds of surgery: incisional and non-incisional.

The differences between the methods of double eyelid surgery

While both methods of double eyelid surgery require sutures as well as incisions to be made, there are seven significant differences between them.

  1. Surgery time
    The non-incisional procedure can take up to 30 minutes to be done while the incisional procedure takes between 45 to 60 minutes.
  2. Recovery time
    The non-incisional procedure requires a rest period of 5 to 10 days and there will be mild swelling or minimal bruising. On the other hand, the incisional procedure calls for a rest time of 2 to 4 weeks, also with mild swelling or minimal bruising. The incisional procedure needs a longer rest time as there is more tissue being cut as compared to the non-incisional method which causes less bruising.
  3. Amount of time needed for results to be visible
    The non-incisional procedure will show results as quickly as 4 weekspost surgery while the incisional procedure requires at least 2 months for results to show.
  4. Scarring
    During the non-incisional method, between 3 and 5 incisions measuring 1 to 2 millimeters are made along the crease of the upper eyelid. During the incisional method, one incision measuring 35 to 45 millimeters long is made. While the difference may seem staggering, the eyelid heals no matter what procedure is chosen; the scars will be gone between 4 and 6 monthspost surgery. The formation of a scar is affected by several factors; the type of suture used, how well the surgeon stitched, if there was an infection or breakdown of the wound, and if the person simply has the genetic ability to form bad scars.
  5. Level of permanence
    With the non-incisional method, there are many factors affecting how long the crease will last. These factors include how long the suture is over time, if there were enough tissue adhesions formed and how well the area of surgery was taken care of. With the incisional method, the double eyelid crease is fully permanent.
  6. Versatility
    With the incisional method, the surgeon is able to correct other eyelid problems such as skin excess, ptosis, asymmetry and excess eyelid fat. However, the non-incisional method is unable to correct such issues.
  7. Price points
    Non-incisional surgery typically costs between $3200 and $3500 while incisional surgery usually costs between $3800 and $4500.

Before and After Pictures:

double eyelid surgery before and after double eyelid surgery before and after

Before you decide to go for your double eyelid surgery….

If you don’t know what procedure would achieve the results you are looking for, it is important to keep your desired outcome in mind. There is a wide variety of procedures in existence and they get different jobs done. You could do your own research or book a consultation session to see which procedure is best able to help you achieve your vision. During such consultation sessions, the surgeon typically assesses the patient to see if there are any other existing eye issues that should or could be fixed, like ptosis or skin excess. Should those problems be present, the surgeon will discuss the best choice of procedure. The surgeon may opt for the incisional double eyelid surgery to solve all the issues with one procedure, allowing for the best results to happen.