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Eyelid Surgery

Sagging and puffiness around the eyes can make you look perpetually tired and older than you feel. While sleep and exercise can help, there comes a time when cosmetic surgery is the most effective solution. To address these issues, board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Shim Ching performs blepharoplasty, often called eyelid surgery, in Honolulu, Hawaii.

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What are the benefits of eyelid surgery?

Women and men choose eyelid surgery for a variety of reasons, which often include one or more of the following:

  • Removing loose upper eyelid skin
  • Reducing puffy bags from under the eyes
  • Raising droopy lower eyelids
  • Creating or enhancing the upper eyelid fold (Asian eyelid surgery)

Dr. Ching can combine eyelid surgery with other facial procedures such as a brow lift to further enhance the upper face or a facelift for an overall facial rejuvenation.

How is eyelid surgery performed?

Dr. Ching performs eyelid surgery as an outpatient procedure. The surgery takes from 30 minutes to 2 hours to perform. Depending on the patient’s needs, he performs upper eyelid surgery, lower eyelid surgery, or both.

  • For upper eyelid surgery, Dr. Ching places the incision in the natural crease of the upper eyelid. If the patient does not have an upper eyelid crease, he places the incision where the resulting scar is almost invisible. He then removes loose skin and fat from the upper eyelid along with a small strip of muscle.
  • For lower eyelid surgery, the procedure depends on the patient’s condition. Some patients only need fat removed. In many cases this fat is preserved, but moved into a lower position in the lower eyelid to fill out any hollows that cause puffy bags or darkened circles under the eyes. Other patients may need excess skin removed and the muscle and ligaments of the lower eyelid tightened. Incisions are hidden either inside the lower eyelid or just below the lashes. With either placement, the scar is concealed.

What can I expect during recovery after eyelid surgery?

Most patients return home the day of their eyelid surgery in the care of an adult friend or family member. Recovery from eyelid surgery varies between patients; in general, it can take as little as 2 to 3 days or as long as 2 weeks. Most patients experience only mild discomfort for the first few days that is controlled with prescription medication.

Swelling and bruising are normal, but may be minimized by applying ice packs as directed and keeping the head elevated at all times for the first few days. In most cases, patients feel ready to go out in public within a week or two.

Patients who wear contact lenses will need to stop wearing them for about a week.

Strenuous activity should be avoided for the first week and then resumed gradually as directed by Dr. Ching.

Will medical insurance pay for my eyelid surgery?

Eyelid surgery is usually considered an elective procedure and therefore is not covered by most medical insurance plans. However, if the procedure is performed to improve your vision, insurance may cover all or part of the cost. To find out, discuss this with Dr. Ching and your medical insurance provider.

How much does eyelid surgery cost?

Prices for eyelid surgery at our Honolulu practice depend on several factors including whether you are having the upper or lower eyelids done, or both sets; the complexity of the procedure; and whether your eyelid surgery is combined with other procedures. The typical range is $2,000 to $5,000. Qualified patients can secure financing through CareCredit if desired. For the most positive surgical outcome, we recommend considering a surgeon’s training and experience above cost.

To find out more about eyelid surgery and other procedures that can help you look younger and more attractive, request a consultation with Dr. Ching or call our office at (808) 585-8855 to schedule an appointment.

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Shim Ching, MD