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Eyelid-lifting Surgery Can Improve Quality of Life

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Cosmetic surgery that repairs droopy eyelids, also known as blepharoplasty, has an overall positive impact on patients' quality of life, according to a paper presented at the 2009 American Academy of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery Foundation Annual Meeting.

In a paper presented at the 2009 American Academy of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery Foundation (AAO-HNSF) Annual Meeting & OTO EXPO in San Diego, researchers administered a retrospective questionnaire survey of 26 adult patients undergoing bilateral upper and lower lid cosmetic blepharoplasty. The authors used the Glasgow Benefit Inventory (GBI), which is a validated quality of life questionnaire that aims to assess the impact of an otolaryngologic intervention on a patient. Patients undergoing surgery for non-cosmetic indications, or those who had additional cosmetic procedures performed, were excluded.

Blepharoplasty is surgery to repair droopy eyelids by removing excess skin, muscle and fat. Eyelids stretch and lose elasticity as people age. As a result, excess fat may gather above and below the eyelids, causing sagging eyebrows, drooping upper lids and bags under the eyes. Besides making patients look older, severely sagging skin around the eyes can also impair vision.

Results of the questionnaire indicated that the procedure had a positive impact on quality of life for almost all the outcome measures used in the GBI. The authors noted that most patients who undergo a blepharoplasty procedure do so to feel better about their appearance and improve their self-esteem. They note that this study is the first to confirm that patients do receive the quality of life benefits that they are hoping to achieve with the plastic surgery.

Adapted from materials provided by American Academy of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery, via EurekAlert!, a service of AAAS., October 5, 2009