Eyelid Surgery

Have you noticed that your eyelids have begun to droop and bags have formed under your eyes? Extra skin and creases around the eyes can impart a drowsy or severe look that can be harsh and uncomfortable. Fortunately, this is precisely what eyelid surgery in the Westport and Fairfield, CT area can correct, giving you a more youthful and relaxed look.

To make subtle improvements to the skin and tissue surrounding your eyes, you demand a skilled surgeon — one with the training and experience to determine which techniques will best give you the more youthful look you want to achieve…and restore your self-confidence. Trust Westport plastic surgeon Dr. Ellen Mahony, fully certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery.

With Ellen’s upper and lower eyelid surgery, excess skin and fat are removed and soft tissue repositioned, to enhance your natural contours and better reflect your true expression and emotion. Vision problems caused by overhang of the upper eyelids can also be corrected.

Ellen will first sit down with you, evaluate your skin condition and facial structure, and tell you honestly if eyelid surgery is right for you. You’ll probably have questions, and Ellen is ready to listen to your concerns and take the time to give you direct, honest answers.* Eyelid surgery is just one of the facial procedures performed by Dr. Ellen Mahony to help you look your best.

For optimum results, you may want to ask Ellen about additional cosmetic procedures, such as a brow lift or face lift. She also highly recommends considering fillers or ALMI to address the hollows underneath the eyes, a very common complaint! These are in-office procedures that can be used before or after your eyelid surgery.


Do you perform eyelid surgery in office?

In select circumstances yes, but typically I perform my surgical procedures in an accredited hospital, Norwalk Hospital, in Norwalk, CT. I also utilize two accredited outpatient surgical centers in Trumbull and Bridgeport. Patient safety is my #1 concern and that drives the decision on the best location for surgery.

How long does the eyelid surgery take? How long will I be “under”?

Generally speaking, eyelid surgery is one of the shortest surgeries that I perform. Most patients are in and out of the OR in about one to two hours, depending on the details and the extent of the procedure.  However, remember that you do need to plan time for pre-op and post-op (and make sure you have someone to drive you home afterwards!). We provide detailed instructions for our patients on how they should prepare for their surgery in the week before and weeks after. We’ve got you!!

How should I prepare for my consultation with Dr. Mahony about possible eyelid surgery?

I love patients who like to come prepared — we’ll get along great! During our initial consultation in my Westport, CT offices we’ll discuss your general health and any medical conditions, allergies or previous surgeries I should be aware of. And then comes the fun part! You’ll tell me what your concerns are about your eyes, when these concerns started and what your expectations are for your eyelid surgery. We’ll spend some time in front of a mirror so that you can point out exactly what’s bugging you and so that I can assess the condition and elasticity of your skin and offer a personal recommendation for you.

I’m trying to plan my recovery from eyelid surgery. What can you tell me about the aftercare and recovery period?

Great question. We all lead such busy lives with many commitments and I find that the fear of the recovery period and side effects is often what keeps patients from making the decision to have this surgery. While everyone’s recovery period is different, you can generally expect to be recovering at home for about a week. Your incisions might be red and swollen and by resting at home you can apply ice packs on a regular schedule, use eye drops if your eyes are irritated and plan to come in to see me to have your stitches removed 3-4 days after surgery. We’ll work together on a detailed pre- and post-op plan well before your surgery date so that you can have everything you need and use the time to relax, heal and anticipate your new “awake” look! This detailed information from The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery has great advice on what to expect before and after your surgery.

What’s the difference between laser and scalpel blepharoplasty?

The method of making the incision is less important than the surgeon who is making it! The ultimate goal is to get the best result with the least amount of bleeding and swelling, both work well.

Can bulging lower eyelid bags be removed without an incision?

Yes. As long as there isn’t excess lax skin, a small incision can be made on the inside of the lower eyelid to remove or reposition the fat pad. No stitches are placed.

How long does it take for the bruising to go away after eyelid surgery?

The bruising that comes along with eyelid surgery is not much different from any other kind of bruising and takes about 10-14 days to pass. I try to minimize bruising with how I inject the numbing medicine into the area for the incision, taping the incision immediately afterward and icing immediately afterwards. As soon as possible, I like to encourage massaging of the tissue to help dissipate any discoloration. Most people look pretty good at 5 days and conceal any residual bruising with cover up!

How long does an upper eyelid lift last?

A good 8-10 years or longer.

I’m 30 years old and now notice dark circles under my eyes along with sort of a “gulley” at my inner lower eyelid, near my nose. I don’t want surgery…is there anything else I can do?

Some of the changes we see early on in our aging process are similar to what we see in more advanced stages in our parents. In other words, they may be related to heredity and ethnicity. We refer to that “gulley” area as the tear trough. It marks the junction between the eye area and the nasal, cheek areas. In the absence of lax skin or bags of bulging fat, soft fillers like Juvederm can be used to soften that junction and conservatively rejuvenate the region. Oftentimes the darkness that is associated with this depression is a function of how light is reflected and when the depression is filled in, the darkness is far less.

I’m in my mid-forties and have been using fillers and toxins to fill in hollows and calm down my worry lines and crow’s feet. I thought I would get more “lift” to my brow with the Botox but it doesn’t seem to be helping as much. Do I just need to add more Botox?

I run into this all the time! Regrettably, there is a point in time when gravity and skin laxity win over Botox. And, it’s usually in the mid to late 40’s. What happens is that the heaviness of the upper lid, due to the extra skin folds, along with the laxity of the forehead, are too much for Botox to correct. It really becomes a waste of money. Although it may have worked before, it won’t work forever. So, what to do?? This is the perfect time to make the 10-20 year investment in an eyelid lift. I had mine done and it was undoubtedly the biggest bang for the buck in making a lasting difference in my look. Consider what you spend on Botox repeatedly compared to what you pay for one eyelid lift…it’s pretty easy math!

Come on in and let’s see what an eyelid lift can do for you!

What’s the difference between an eyelid lift and brow lift?

Great question! An eyelid lift specifically treats the excess skin on the eyelid, removes a portion of the thin folded skin that is part of the skin that moves when your eye opens and closes. Sometimes this folded skin will hang down all the way to the lashes!

In comparison, a brow lift is performed to reposition a sagging, low eyebrow to a higher position.

How would I know if I should have an eyelid lift or a brow lift?

The straight up answer is you won’t know until we have time to talk and do a facial assessment. At the time of your consultation, I’ll learn about your primary complaint as well as your goals. Once I analyze your face, I can explain to you how your brow and eyelid contribute to the issue. And, how each will change your look. After that, it’s pretty straight forward as to the plan!