As post-blepharoplasty syndrome can resolve itself over time, surgical treatment is only advised after 3 months. To prevent corneal damage during this time, lubricant eye drops and gels (see below) must be used. It is also paramount to have regular check ups with your oculoplastic surgeon to ensure there are no complications.
In all cases, the oculoplastic surgeon will carefully assess the cause of the post-blepharoplasty syndrome (there are many) in order to best tailor the treatment to the patient.
Lubricant eye drops and gels are the most common non-surgical treatment for post-blepharoplasty syndrome in the early stages.
Mild post-blepharoplasty syndrome can be treated with over-the-counter artificial tear solutions. There is a wide range of artificial tears available and it is a good idea to try several different ones to see what suits best.
Eye drops can be put in as often as every 15-30 minutes if necessary if they do not contain preservatives, but may only be needed as little as twice a day in a mild dry eye, depending on patient symptoms. Eye ointment can be used but this will blur the vision for a few minutes.
Silicone Plugs and Gel Plugs
The tear ducts can be blocked with tiny silicone or gel plugs to reduce tear drainage. Normally, the tears drain via the upper and lower punctum at the corner of the eyelid nearest the nose, into the drainage ducts and into the back of the nose. By inserting plugs it increases the amount of time both natural and artificial tear solutions remain on the eye, keeping it lubricated and comfortable for longer.
If the lack of skin in the lower lid is causing serious problems, the only way to correct it is by adding more skin. There are two ways to do so:
- Flaps: A piece of tissue (skin and/or surrounding muscle) is taken from the forehead, eyelid or cheek to cover the area where more skin is needed.
- Grafts: A piece of skin is taken from a different area of your body and sutured to add surface area. The best skin to use as a graft is skin from the other eyelid or around the ear, the inner aspect of the upper arm or the supraclavicular (collarbone) area.
A graft is a more common method of treatment than a flap in upper lid post-blepharoplasty syndrome.
If scarring within the eyelid is causing serious problems the only way to correct it is by dividing the scar and inserting a mucous membrane graft such as mucous from the oral palette or the nose, or, by putting in a graft of human donor collagen.
If removal of fat has contributed to the problem, hyaluronic acid gel filler (eg. RestylaneR or PerlaneR) can be injected into the lower lid/upper cheek junction to reinflate the area and push the eyelid up vertically.
Rarely a mid-face lift is required to raise the cheek and hence the eyelid.