Why the Eyes May Not Close Fully After Eyelid Surgery

Blepharoplasty has quickly become one of the most sought-after cosmetic procedures. It’s easy to see why. Correcting age-related laxity in the eyelids has a way of brightening the entire face. The results of blepharoplasty are indefinite, meaning that the eyes never go back to how they were before surgery but will continue to age normally. Recovery is relatively short and, and the risks associated with surgery are minimal. However, they do need to be discussed. Here, we examine why some people cannot entirely close their eyes after they have cosmetic or corrective eyelid surgery.

The complication that prevents full eyelid closure is referred to as lagophthalmos. It is not painful, but it certainly can be a pain. Daily tasks like showering, washing your face, and sleeping may be severely impacted if your eyes don’t close. There is also an increased risk of chronic dry eye and corneal damage when the eyelids do not close completely.

How Does This Happen?

The skin on the eyelids may be the most delicate on the whole body. It is definitely the thinnest. Modifying the eyelids is, therefore, a complex matter that requires extensive skill and a great deal of patience. Any one of the following surgical events can lead to lagophthalmos:

  • Eyelid laxity that was present before surgery is not adequately addressed.
  • Too much skin is removed.
  • Too much fat is removed.
  • Damage to the orbicularis oculi muscle is sustained.

Avoiding Potential Surgical Complications of Blepharoplasty

While there is a bit of unpredictability in all tissue, an experienced and extensively trained surgeon accounts for the nuances of eyelid skin, muscle, and fat when performing delicate procedures like blepharoplasty. There may be nothing a patient can do to improve complicated eyelid closure after blepharoplasty other than to undergo a second procedure to revise the eyelid. The best way to avoid this complication is to choose your surgeon with the utmost care.

Dr. Fante has been performing eyelid surgeries for more than twenty years. A Fellow of the American Society of Ophthalmic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery and other esteemed organizations, he has also authored several academic articles on facial and orbital surgeries.

We care about results. We care about our patients. Learn more about blepharoplasty in our Denver office. Call (303) 839-1616.

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