Eyelid Rejuvenation

  • Procedure Time: 1-3 hours
  • Recovery Time: 1-2 weeks
  • Surgery Type: Outpatient

Dr. Gadaleta is a board-certified Facial Plastic surgeon with extensive experience in performing upper and lower eyelid rejuvenation. He is often sought out for his warm bedside manner and natural looking results.

What is a Blepharoplasty?

The eyes are often the first area of the face to show signs of aging. A blepharoplasty is a procedure that aims to rejuvenate the eyelids. As we enter the 3rd to 4th decade of life, the skin and soft tissue of the upper eyelids tends to droop and become redundant. As the lower lids age, bags and dark circles (i.e. hollowing) begin to form. These changes lead to heavy, tired, or even sad-appearing eyes. In severe cases, this excess skin can even impact a person’s peripheral vision. A blepharoplasty is the procedure that corrects these issues and aims to rejuvenate the upper and lower eyelids and provide a more youthful gaze. Upper and lower eyelids can be treated in isolation or combined. For patients with heavy eyebrows, Dr. Gadaleta will often recommend a browlift procedure to be performed in conjunction with eyelid rejuvenation. Eyelid rejuvenation is an outpatient procedure, meaning patients go home after the procedure is completed

How is it Performed?

For upper eyelid rejuvenation, excess skin and fat are removed from the upper lid to reverse typical signs of aging. The incisions are hidden in a natural crease and once healed, are practically invisible even upon close inspection. Dr. Gadaleta often performs upper blepharoplasty under local sedation (numbing medication only) with or without light sedation. The procedure is comfortable and takes about an hour from start to finish.

For the lower eyelids, there are two different approaches that Dr. Gadaleta will use depending on the patient’s specific anatomy and goals. If the patient has bags, but the skin is still tight and well maintained, Dr. Gadaleta will often utilize a transconjunctival approach (with the incisions hidden inside the lower lid as opposed to on the skin). If there is excess skin or muscle that needs to be tightened, then Dr. Gadaleta will favor a subciliary approach, which involves an incision in an inconspicuous site along the lash line. From this approach, the surgeon can excise excess fat, muscle, and skin before the incision is closed with fine sutures. When sutures are used to close this kind of incision, they are invisible to the eye.

Dr. Gadaleta utilizes the most innovative techniques to restore the lower eyelid anatomy, including fat transposition and laser skin tightening. Fat transposition involves using the fat that contributes to the lower lid bags to contour the hollowness adjacent to the bags. If a patient doesn’t have bags but does have hollowness in that region, Dr. Gadaleta will often borrow fat from the body and transplant a small amount to the undereye area to provide a youthful contour. Unlike when filler is placed in this area, fat provides a permanent result. If a patient has a small amount of excess skin on the lower eyelids, Dr. Gadaleta will often perform laser tightening of the skin instead of making an incision.


The bulk of the recovery occurs within the first 2-3 weeks following surgery. Typically, patients will experience bruising and swelling, most notably around the eyes. This rapidly resolves over the first 10-14 days. Some patients will feel well enough to return to work or school within a week of their eyelid lift procedure, but those who desire more privacy may wait 2 weeks, when residual bruising can be covered with makeup. Patients will use ointment on the incisions twice a day for the first week to promote healing. It is normal to feel uncomfortable for the first few days following surgery; however, severe pain is uncommon. The eyes may feel dry after surgery, particularly if the patient had dry eye symptoms prior to surgery. Moisturizing drops are prescribed to help alleviate this. Sutures will be removed between 4-8 days after surgery. Patients who wear contact lenses may resume wearing them after about one week. If a laser was used on the under-eye area, there will be some light peeling of the skin that lasts for 4-7 days followed by a pinkness to the skin for a few weeks. By week 3, the majority of the swelling resolves, and a patient can start appreciating the changes made during surgery. Light exercise activities can be re-introduced at this point and, by week 6, all normal physical activities can be resumed. Improvements will be appreciated throughout the year following surgery as healing progresses.

Is Blepharoplasty Covered By Insurance?

Many patients wonder if their blepharoplasty procedure will be covered by insurance. Although rare, if a patient has so much redundant skin on their upper eyelids that it is causing restriction in their peripheral vision, this would be an indication for an insurance-based upper blepharoplasty. In order to qualify for insurance coverage of the procedure, a patient must have a documented exam with an eye specialist, such as an ophthalmologist. Dr. Gadaleta accepts several of the larger California plans. Please call the office to find out if your insurance plan is accepted!

Blepharoplasty Before & After Photos

Schedule a Blepharoplasty Consultation

Reach out today to schedule a blepharoplasty consultation in Palo Alto, San Mateo or Menlo Park with Dr. Dominick Gadaleta. As a board-certified San Mateo facial plastic surgeon, Dr. Gadaleta’s practice focuses exclusively on surgery of the face and neck. Please contact us using the form below, or call the office most convenient to you.

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