Blepharoplasty is a surgical procedure in which extra fat and skin are removed from the eyelids. This surgery may be done on the upper eyelid, lower eyelid or both. Several factors affect the cost of blepharoplasty, including the reason for the procedure, the extent of the surgery and the location in which the surgery is performed.
The skin of the upper and lower eyelids is very thin. As a result, it can stretch and sag as a person ages. The muscles and fat beneath the skin can also succumb to gravity, making the bags both above and below the eyes more prominent. A blepharoplasty, or eyelift, can leave the patient with firmer, younger looking skin around the eyes.
If no medical reason exists for a blepharoplasty, the procedure is classified as cosmetic surgery. Most health insurance policies will not cover the cost of blepharoplasty performed for cosmetic reasons alone. In some patients, however, the excess skin of the upper eyelid is prominent enough to interfere with proper vision. This changes the classification of an eyelift to a functional surgery, allowing for insurance coverage.
Blepharoplasty is typically an outpatient procedure that takes under two hours to complete. More extensive cases, as well as cases in which other repairs are done at the same time, may take longer. This may increase the cost of blepharoplasty, due to the additional time and resources required to complete the surgery. It may also lower the price; for example, some surgeons offer discounted prices to patients who have both an upper and lower eyelid lift at the same time.
The location in which the patient undergoes the procedure can also affect the cost of blepharoplasty. If only one surgeon in an area offers the procedure, he does not have to consider his competitors' prices when setting his own. Therefore, he may charge more for the service than an eye surgeon in a larger city may. On the other hand, doctors in larger cities may incur higher costs of doing business, such as office rental, than their small-town contemporaries may. Those costs are often passed on to the patient.
On average, the cost of blepharoplasty ranges from $2,000 to $4,000 per eyelid. Patients who are having both upper and lower eyelids done at the same time should expect to pay at least $4,000 and possibly as much as $7,000. Anyone interested in blepharoplasty should get several estimates for the procedure, making sure each quote includes all associated costs such as anesthesia, in order to compare the prices properly.