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Differences Between Laser Eyelid Surgery and Traditional Eyelid Surgery

What is the benefit of the Laser when undergoing Blepharoplasty?

Safety! When incorporated into the Blepharoplasty procedure, the CO2 laser maximizes the safety of the procedure while minimizing the swelling and bruising that can occur afterwards.

The CO2 laser is used as a surgical tool and as it makes the incision or goes through the excess fat it immediately 'welds' or 'seals' the blood vessels thereby decreasing the risk of bleeding during the procedure. The eye is located in a tight bony compartment and we want to minimize the chances of any blood getting into the space between the bone and the eye. Since the bone cannot expand, blood in that space could potentially cause pressure on the eye itself. The CO2 laser greatly reduces this risk, thus making for a very safe procedure. Dr. Warren Lent, a Beverly Hills, Plastic Surgery, uses specially developed instruments, which completely protect the eye from the laser during the procedure.

Because of the CO2 lasers' potential ability to prevent bleeding, the amount of bruising and swelling are reduced and patients can expect to return to work and normal routines faster than with 'old fashioned' or traditional Blepharoplasty techniques.

The CO2 laser also reduces the potential for pain during the procedure. This allows patients to undergo the procedure while avoiding the need to be 'put to sleep' or sedated with total body anesthesia. The procedure can be performed by placing only a small amount of 'local' medication into the eyelid, similar to the way a dentist numbs the mouth for dental work. This decreases the risk associated with total body anesthesia, as well as decreasing the overall costs of the procedure.

In general, the CO2 laser greatly reduces the risks in undergoing eyelid surgery, helps to allow for the procedure to be done without sedation or 'general' anesthesia, and usually has a faster recovery time.

Can I get rid of wrinkles around the eyes at the same time?

Yes! The best way to get rid of wrinkles is with laser resurfacing, which can be performed at the same time as a Blepharoplasty.

Laser resurfacing is the technique whereby the damaged skin layers are literally "vaporized" away. Wrinkled skin is due to damage of the dermal layer of the skin and is usually caused by sun exposure, the aging process or cigarette smoking. The laser can remove or "vaporize this damaged layer, thus allowing the body's natural repair process to bring in new tight collagen which helps to smooth the skin.

The laser resurfacing technique, developed by Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon, Dr. Lent, is the most effective way to reduce wrinkles as it directly improves the quality of the skin. Other techniques, such as when skin is cut away during the 'old fashion' Blepharoplasty technique, risks causing scar tissue to build up in the eyelid. This can lead to the eyelid being 'pulled-down' and distorted.

After the skin is treated with the laser, it takes about one week for the skin to heal and become covered with new, fresh skin. After that, the skin will usually be pink for several weeks or even several months, which indicates that the skin is still undergoing the tightening process. Make-up can be applied during this second healing phase. In Dr. Lent, a Los Angeles Cosmetic Surgeon has performed thousands of this very popular procedure, and it was there that this wonderful technique was created and has led to thousands of happy patients.