Not all eye surgeries are done to correct vision. In some cases, a patient may require cosmetic surgery — oculoplastic surgery — to correct conditions involving the tissues surrounding the eye, such as the eyelid, rather than to the cornea or lens of the eye itself. Oculoplastic surgery can correct a number of cosmetic problems including dropping or sagging eyelids, bags under the eyes, growths on the eyelid and tear duct blockage.
Oculoplastic surgeons are experienced ophthalmologists who are also trained in performing plastic surgery for the delicate tissues around the eye. They understand the balance of performing cosmetic or reconstructive surgery while maintaining the eyes’ function. Some oculoplastic procedures may be considered medically necessary, while others are purely cosmetic.
Conditions in Which Oculoplastic Surgery Is Medically Necessary
Ptosis— Drooping of the upper eyelid caused by aging, contact lens wear, injury and sometimes cataract or other eye surgeries. If the condition interferes with vision, oculoplastic surgery to correct the drooping eyelid is considered medically necessary.
Blepharospasm— An uncontrolled and involuntary blinking or twitching of the eyelid. The condition is the result of nerve cells sending signals to the eyelid muscles. To treat this condition, Botox is injected into the affected muscles in the eye to block the nerve signals, which will relieve muscle spasms and uncontrolled closing of the eyelid.
Entropion— A condition in which the upper or lower eyelid turns inward, causing the
skin and eyelashes to rub against the eye. Entropion mayresult in redness,
irritation, excess tearing, crusting of the eyelid, mucous discharge,
foreign bodies in the eye and decreased vision.
Ectropion— A condition in which the lower eyelid sags and turns out, resulting in exposure of the eyeball. This condition may be caused by aging, injury, eyelid growths or facial paralysis. Ectropion may cause tearing, redness, crusting of the eyelid, mucous discharge, irritation, scarring of the cornea and decreased vision.
Eyelid growths— Growths on the eyelid or face may be benign, but they can also be malignant. Your doctor will determine if it is medically necessary to remove a growth on the eyelid.
Blockage of the tear duct—This condition may appear at birth, or as the result of injury, disease or infection. Symptoms of tear duct blockage include pain, chronic tearing, crusting and watering or discharge. If surgery is required, a new “bypass” route may be constructed to connect the upper tear ducts to the nose for tear drainage.
Reconstructive surgery— Following injury, burns or birth defects, reconstructive surgery of the eyelid or repair of fractures in the orbital bone may be necessary.
Conditions in Which Oculoplastic Surgery May Only Be Cosmetic
Blepharoplasty— This procedure corrects excessive skin on the upper or lower eyelids, and bags or extra fat above and below the eyes.
Brow ptosis — A drooping eyebrow may or may not interfere with vision. If it does, surgery to correct the condition would be considered medically necessary. Otherwise, correcting a drooping eyebrow is a cosmetic procedure.
Why Choose a Key-Whitman Oculoplastic Eye Surgeon?
While many of these procedures can be performed by a plastic surgeon, Key-Whitman Dallas oculoplastic eye surgeons are board certified M.D.s who specialize in eye surgery and the tissues surround the eye, rather than general plastic surgery. Their limited focus on the eye means they are highly knowledgeable and skilled in dealing with the eye. Oculoplastic surgeons are experienced ophthalmologists who have also received training in plastic surgery of tissues around the eye, and understand the balance of performing cosmetic or reconstructive surgery while maintaining eye function.
Key-Whitman surgeon Jorge Corona, M.D specializes in reconstructive and cosmetic eyelid surgery. If you have an eye condition requiring cosmetic or medically necessary oculoplastic surgery, turn to Key-Whitman. All cosmetic and reconstructive eye surgeries are performed in Key-Whitman’s own outpatient surgery center, and their experienced staff will make sure you receive the highest quality of care.