What is Asian Eyelid Surgery?
Asian eyelids are anatomically different from occidental eyelids in many ways. While Asian eyes are uniquely beautiful, some patients of Asian descent may be bothered by their upper eyelids, and may wish to pursue Asian eyelid surgery. Common reasons for which patients choose to undergo Asian eyelid surgery include:
- Lack of upper eyelid fold
- Asymmetry of upper eyelid fold
- Asymmetry of upper eyelid skin
- Excessive upper eyelid skin
- Drooping of upper eyelids
Some patients are looking to create new upper eyelids folds (double eyelid surgery) or improve symmetry of the folds to make the eyes look bigger and brighter. Sometimes the droopy upper lids can even block patients’ peripheral vision and limit daily activities.
When most Asian patients seek Asian eyelid surgery, they are looking to enhance their natural ethnically Asian appearance, rather than becoming “westernized”. Therefore, Asian eyelid surgery should be performed by a surgeon who has a keen understanding of what makes Asian eyelids unique, and is highly experienced in the nuanced surgical techniques tailored to Asian eyelids.
- Double eyelid surgery, also known as Asian blepharoplasty, is a surgical procedure to create an eyelid crease or improve symmetry of the creases to give the eyes a wider and more open appearance
- Epicanthoplasty is a very intricate procedure sometimes performed in conjunction with an Asian blepharoplasty to create or adjust the medial fold.
- Upper eyelid blepharoplasty including removal of upper eyelid skin and recontouring of fat, as well as ptosis surgery could be performed in a way that is tailored to Asian eyelids to restore a youthful appearance while preserving the naturally beautiful Asian features
- Lower eyelid blepharoplasty addressing bags under eyes and brow and forehead lift addressing droopy brows, could also be performed together with upper eyelid surgery to give the eyes a more rested and vibrant appearance.
The purpose of double eyelid surgery is to create or refine an eyelid crease in the Asian upper eyelids where the natural eyelid crease may be absent or asymmetric. The procedure generally gives the eyes a wider and more open appearance and can be performed to enhance patients’ naturally beautiful and unique Asian characteristics. There are various techniques to double eyelid surgery. At your one-on-one consultation, Dr. Joseph will listen to your goals, perform a comprehensive evaluation of your eyelids and take the time to discuss with you the best approach tailored specifically for you. Additional technical information and surgical descriptions are available here.
The upper blepharoplasty procedure is one of the most common procedures Dr. Joseph performs. Yet, no two patients are the same because the surgery is custom tailored to each patient. In Asian patients, the eyelid crease tends to be lower, and sometimes absent. Dr. Joseph will discuss with you at the time of consultation your preference regarding your eyelid crease, and she will design the surgical markings and use the techniques specifically tailored to your preferences of the post-operative crease. Depending on your specific anatomy, additional muscle and/or skin and fat may also be removed or sculpted. This can be performed in conjunction with other procedures such as the lower blepharoplasty to address bags under eyes or brow/forehead lift to address droopy brows.
Dr. Shannon S. Joseph is particularly well-versed in the unique anatomy of Asian eyelids as well as the nuanced surgical techniques specifically designed for Asian eyelids. Not only is Dr. Joseph a fellowship-trained oculofacial plastic surgeon who specializes exclusively on plastic surgery around the eyes, she also has particularly extensive experience taking care of Asian patients while on faculty at Johns Hopkins and the University of Michigan. Dr. Joseph is well known for her meticulous and gifted hands, as well as keen aesthetic eye and attention to detail. She uses ultra-delicate surgical instruments and highly specialized surgical techniques specifically designed for the eyes. In addition, Dr. Joseph is a board-certified ophthalmologist, which means she also has a keen understanding of what it takes to protect the health of the eyes and always takes this into consideration when performing eyelid surgery. Lastly, Dr. Joseph is fluent in Mandarin Chinese, which adds an added layer of comfort and ease for many of her patients. Learn more about why patients choose us.
Asian eyelid surgery may be performed with patients awake or under anesthesia. We want you to be comfortable throughout the entire procedure and individualize the plan for anesthesia based on your preference, whether additional procedures are planned, and your overall health.
Surgical recovery varies from person to person, but most patients are able to return to work within a week after surgery. Most patients experience only mild discomfort and do not need strong pain medications. Following surgery, most patients will be seen in the office approximately 5-10 days later to evaluate healing. Bruising and swelling will be present after surgery, and is usually most noticeable for the first 1-2 weeks after surgery. Minor swelling can persist for a number of weeks to months, especially in Asian patients. If desired, most patients may begin wearing eye makeup following the first appointment after surgery.
Please refer to our additional resources for general pre-operative and post-operative instructions.
Insurance does not cover Asian blepharoplasty (double eyelid surgery) and epicanthoplasty. However, certain health plans may cover upper eyelid blepharoplasty and ptosis repair if there is vision limitation and the excessive skin or the drooping of the upper eyelids is so severe that it can block peripheral vision and interfere with daily activities. In these situations, the eyelid surgery may be eligible for coverage under many medical insurance plans. The necessary criteria that must be met to qualify for coverage may vary among insurance policies. At your consultation, Dr. Joseph will perform the testing and measurements necessary for your insurance to review and determine whether you may be eligible for coverage.
Schedule a Consultation
If you are interested in this procedure, please contact us to schedule a personal consultation with Dr. Joseph. We take care of patients from Troy, Birmingham, Bloomfield Hills, West Bloomfield, Rochester Hills, Rochester, Auburn Hills, Madison Heights, and the rest of Metro Detroit and Southeastern Michigan. Dr. Joseph will listen to your concerns and perform a comprehensive evaluation and meticulous measurements of your eyelids. Dr. Joseph will then work together with you to build a surgical treatment plan that’s designed specifically for you.