Blepharoplasty (Eyelid Reduction)


As part of normal ageing, the skin of the eyelids may sag and develop folds of skin. Excess fatty tissue in the upper and lower eyelids may contribute to the condition. If the condition is extreme in the upper eyelid, it may partially block vision.

Blepharoplasty surgery can improve visual problems. The loose fold of skin that droops over the upper eyelid can be removed to make the eyes appear bigger. The convexity below the eyes can also be reduced.

Eyelid reductions can be done alone or at the same time as other facial surgery.

The Surgical Procedure

Either the upper eyelid, the lower eyelid, or both can be treated during the same operation. The loose fold of excess skin that droops over the upper eye is carefully removed so that the natural shape of the eye is retained. Excess fatty tissue under the upper eyelid may also be removed. In the same way, excess skin of the lower eyelid may be excised to remove the “bag” below the eye, fat tissue may be removed or repositioned.

If there is no excess skin to be removed from the lower eyelid, excess fatty tissue may be removed or repositioned through an incision on the inside of the eyelid. The operation takes between one and three hours.

As much as possible, incisions are made in the skin’s natural folds so that the fine scars are less visible. An incision is closed with a fine suture that is removed in four to five days; in most cases sutures that dissolve and that will not need to be removed are used. As the incisions heal, they should eventually fade to fine lines.

A Blepharoplasty reduction will not remove the dark circles that can occur around the eyes, smile lines at the corners of the eyes, or a fallen brown obstructing vision. Other surgery such as a facelift or Brow lift may be needed.

Often approaching the eyelid area from two directions produces a more subtle result. For example, a patient requesting upper eyelid surgery may be able to have a significant change to their eyelids by removing a lot of skin from their upper eyelid, but by removing half as much skin from the eyelid and performing a brow lift to raise the eyebrows, a similar degree of change with more balance and less obvious evidence of surgery can be achieved.


Our Melbourne Blepharoplasty surgery may be undertaken with either general anaesthesia or local anaesthesia. Dr. Breidahl will advise you which is best in your case.

Recovery from Surgery

You can usually drink fluids and eat a light meal two to three hours after surgery. Discomfort is usually mild after eyelid reduction surgery and typically is limited to the incisions. You may need pain relief for a few days. Dr. Breidahl will prescribe pain medication.

Some bruising and swelling is to be expected in the area and usually subsides in three to four weeks. Sleeping with your head elevated will help to reduce swelling. Putting a cool compress gently over the area can also help relieve discomfort and swelling.

You can resume your normal activities a few days after surgery but do not smoke, undertake strenuous activity or drink a lot of alcohol during healing. Most people take between two and three weeks off work. Healing is usually complete within a few months.

You can wear make-up after about 10 days. There may be some temporary changes in vision that usually resolve quickly. Do not wear contact lenses for at least two weeks. After that, they can be worn but may still cause some discomfort for a while.

Follow Up

You will usually return to Dr. Breidahl for a check-up after about a week. Dr. Breidahl will examine the treated area and answer any questions. Another appointment may be scheduled at the check-up visit.

All surgery carries with it risks and complications. See here for a summary of the common risks. Risks specific to both your personal situation and the specific procedures you are seeking will be discussed in detail at your appointment with Dr Breidahl.


Dr. Alan Breidahl

Dr. Alan Breidahl

Dr. Alan BreidahlPlastic and Reconstructive Surgeon Dr. Alan Breidahl is one of Australia’s most respected Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeons. He is a specialist in post-traumatic and cleft lip-associated Rhinoplasty and has over 20 years clinical experience in all...

Lee Kuzma

Lee Kuzma

Lee KuzmaDivision 1 Nurse and Dermal Therapist With over 20 years of nursing experience and 15 years of dermal therapy experience, including anti-wrinkle injections, dermal fillers, IPL, peels and microdermabrasion, Lee is highly skilled to bring the best out in your...

Sonia Gemin

Sonia Gemin

Sonia GeminDivision 1 Post-operative Care Nurse Our always smiling and cheerful post-operative care nurse, Sonia has over 15 years’ experience in Plastic Surgery Nursing in both public and private hospitals. With a graduate certificate in Plastic Surgery and Wound...


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