Because the eyes play such an important role in communication, beauty, and attraction, it's unfortunate that they are one of the first areas of the face to show the signs of aging. In the beginning, makeup, moisturizers, and non-surgical methods such as BOTOX® Cosmetic can do wonders. But as more excess skin and wrinkles develop, and the prominence of eyelid bags increases, a tired and sad appearance around the eyes may settle in. Dr. Timothy R. Miller offers an effective solution, blepharoplasty, often called eyelid surgery. Throughout Orange County, women and men visit him at Refreshed Aesthetic Surgery for results that look natural and eyes that are Refreshed.

Dr. Miller, a double board-certified facial plastic surgeon, performs blepharoplasty for patients from Laguna Beach, Newport Beach, San Clemente, Irvine, Mission Viejo, and beyond at his Aliso Viejo office. To schedule your personal consultation with Dr. Miller, please call us at 949-482-1752 or request your consultation online.

Blepharoplasty Orange County

Dr. Miller's Approach to Eyelid Surgery

One of the most common reasons patients come to my practice for consultations is that they’re concerned with looking — or being told by others that they look — tired or sad when they actually feel quite happy or energetic.

However, not all lower eyelid surgical techniques are the same or produce excellent, long-lasting results. Older techniques, which are still in use by most surgeons today, are based on the removal of muscle and fat. Unfortunately, these techniques commonly leave a noticeable scar, alter the shape of the eyes, loosen the lower eyelids, and create a hollowed, aged appearance.

To avoid these unwanted side effects, I use a more sophisticated approach that restores the natural contour of the lower eyelid area. This approach is more technical, but it is very safe and produces better and more consistent results than older techniques. The technique, termed fat repositioning, re-creates the smooth transition from the lower eyelid to the cheek, which produces a youthful, refreshed, and more attractive appearance. Additionally, the incision is performed on the inside of the eyelid, so there is no visible scar and, just as important, the muscle layer is always preserved, thereby preventing common problems and adverse results seen with older techniques. I have published the technique and long-term results in our specialty’s peer reviewed journal: JAMA’s Facial Plastic Surgery.

While lower eyelid rejuvenation is important, the upper eyelid area cannot be overlooked. Excess skin, puffiness, and hollowness are common features that can contribute to a fatigued and aged appearance. When the eyebrows are not of concern or do not contribute to the excess upper eyelid skin, then a straightforward upper blepharoplasty can be performed with minimal recovery time. Contact us today to find out more about one of the top blepharoplasty Orange County has to offer.

Benefits of Eyelid Surgery

Eyelid surgery, termed blepharoplasty (bleph-a-row-plas-tea) can effectively treat tired and sad appearing eyes. Bags under the eyes and excess eyelid skins are the most common reasons people have blepharoplasty. Using sophisticated and innovative techniques, Dr. Miller can create natural, refreshed, and more youthful appearing eyes. Your eyes will not look pulled, altered, or different.

Preparing for Blepharoplasty

Eyelid surgery is an outpatient, minimally invasive surgery which takes just an hour or two to be completed. Prior to your procedure, you will be provided a list of medications to avoid.

If you are taking any important and unavoidable medication, make sure you get it approved by Dr. Miller in advance. Only take the medication as prescribed by the doctor. Additionally, a pre-operative appointment with Dr. Miller and his staff will be scheduled to provide more in-depth instructions to ensure a safe and speedy recovery.

For eyelid surgeries, you will not be allowed to drive home. Your safety is of upmost concern so a spouse, relative, or friend should drive you home and be available for 24 hours after the procedure. Taxis and ride sharing (e.g., Uber, Lyft) are not allowed.

Post-surgical recovery

As with all surgical procedures, patients may notice post-procedure symptoms like swelling, bruising and some minor tenderness.

You will typically see Dr. Miller the day after your surgery, and other appointments will be scheduled during your pre-operative visit. Be sure to follow the after-care regimen provided, for quick and pain-free recovery. You should be able to resume most of your daily routines 4-5 days after surgery.

Common Questions or Concerns

Will I have obvious scars?

Incision placement in lower blepharoplasty is well concealed inside the eyelid. Upper eyelid surgery incisions are typically placed within the natural eyelid crease. The placement of incisions must be exact, and the amount of skin removed must be carefully measured. Dr. Miller will design an incision pattern that provides you optimal results while taking precautions to create imperceptible scars.

What is the recovery like?

Lower eyelid surgery in Orange County is an outpatient procedure and very tolerable with little to no discomfort following the procedure. Most patients return to work in 4 to 5 days, although some may return in 7 days with minimal makeup. Dr. Miller offers a unique laser treatment to help hasten the resolution of bruising, if needed, usually within 7 days. Patients are able to resume most exercise activities in 10-14 days.

Are there non-surgical alternatives to eyelid surgery?

Non-surgical techniques such as BOTOX, dermal fillers, or fat augmentation may improve the appearance of the eyes for some patients. Dr. Miller may recommend using non-surgical treatments in conjunction with eyelid surgery for maximum results.

Will I need upper or lower eyelid surgery?

Dr. Miller will assess your facial characteristics during your consultation and make the appropriate recommendations. In some cases, he may suggest a combined upper and lower blepharoplasty or a brow lift.

Step-by-Step Procedure Facts

  • Your procedure will be performed in our AAAASF-accredited operating facility.
  • Both twilight anesthesia (sedation) and general anesthesia are available.
  • You will be able to return home the day of surgery.
  • Discomfort is minimal, with most patients requiring pain medication for less than 24 hours.
  • Most patients can return to work in about 4 to 7 days.

Who Are Ideal Candidates?

  • People with eyelid bags and excess skin
  • Tired or sad appearing eyes.
  • Patients in good general health.
  • Patients with good eye health.
  • We commonly have patients with significant genetic eyelid bags becoming problematic in their 20s and 30s, so the age for an ideal candidate is not necessarily based on age.

How Long Do the Results Last?

Blepharoplasty can last 7 to 20 years or longer. Although we can’t stop the aging process, the eyelid bags and/or excess skin treated during your procedure will takes years and years, if ever, to return to the state prior to your surgery. To ensure longevity and to enhance the results, laser resurfacing, fillers, and medical grade skin care products may be recommended.

If you’d like to schedule a consultation with Dr. Miller for arguably the most natural and refreshed blepharoplasty results Newport Beach and other surrounding areas have to offer, be sure to contact our clinic today.

What is Ptosis?

Ptosis is a condition in which the upper eyelids appear lower or droopy giving the person a constantly tired appearance. For some individuals, ptosis occurs as a result of an eye injury or trauma while for others it may be hereditary. Eyelids can also droop with age.

Read more about ptosis.

Eyelid Surgery Orange County

What are the risks and side effects of eyelid surgery?

Immediately after the surgery, patients may experience some minor swelling, redness, and discolorations around the eyes. This is short-term and will typically subside in a few days. Other risks are discussed during your consultation and pre-operative appointments.