What does the term Laser Eyelift mean? Is it used by cosmetic eyelid surgeons purely for marketing or does the laser truly improve cosmetic eyelid surgery results? The answer is both.
The word “laser” added to any procedure makes it sound more modern, cleaner, and better. And it is used to market medical and surgical procedures including laser facelift, laser liposuction, laser toenail fungus removal, and laser teeth cleaning. Here in NY the word laser is thrown about quite frequently in medical advertising- I’ve seen all sorts of laser procedures on billboards on the NYC subway.
Lasers are used in cosmetic eyelid surgery in 2 ways:
1. Creating an incision and dissecting tissue: A focused laser cuts the skin and vaporizes tissue with pinpoint accuracy. This can be better than using a scalpel because it theoretically gives the surgeon more manual control and seals blood vessels as it cuts. On the other hand, stitches often need to remain longer after laser upper eyelid surgery and studies have shown similar end results when laser versus scalpel was used to make the upper eyelid incision.
2. Resurfacing the upper eyelid and surrounding skin: Laser energy is used to remove the eyelid skin surface, leaving room for new skin to replace sun-damaged skin. This can be done on its own or at the same time as eyelid skin removal. Laser resurfacing improves the quality of the skin, reducing wrinkles and brown spots. This approach does improve on traditional upper eyelid lifts that didn’t commonly include resurfacing. Last year, I presented my upper eyelid skin laser resurfacing technique to a large group of surgeons at an oculoplastic surgery conference in New Orleans and it was received with much interest. Lower eyelid skin resurfacing is quite common and I expect upper eyelid skin resurfacing to become more popular in the next 5 years.