Brow Lift Surgery
Heavy brow anatomy is typically a result of ageing but also may, in some people, be down to genetics. For men, the natural brow position sits almost exactly at the rim of the orbit, the bony cup in which the eye sits. In ladies, a typical brow position is 4 or 5 mm higher. In the fourth and fifth decade the brow starts to descend. This gives a surly look in men and a tired or angry look for women.
The brow and the upper eyelid are essentially the same anatomical unit and unction together. Brow descent results in heavy up eyelid skin which again adds to the appearance of tiredness.
Often we see patients with heavy upper eyelids who imagine the brow position is at fault. A second group have recently had Botox which relaxes the brow elevator muscles of the forehead giving a heavy brow and also heavy eyelid appearance.
Not uncommonly, we see patients with brows that are not their own, wondering if the brow position should be changed by surgery. Due to a plethora of eyebrow treatments, we often find ladies and less commonly men who have very little of their own brows left. Patients turn to tattooing, microblading, eye pencil or very occasionally hair transplantation to restore the brow position.
In this group, the best option is to reposition the brows by whatever techniques are used to using rather than surgically elevating the brow skin higher on the forehead.
Is Brow Lift Surgery for me?
If you feel that over the last few years your brow has become heavy, falling towards the orbital rim then brow lift surgery may well be for you. If you believe that at rest when looking straight ahead, your brow position is at the described point for either males or females, then potentially what you’re seeing is heavy upper eyelids and not necessarily brow descent.
These two phenomena can and quite often occur independent and or together and are treated separately. Heavy eyelids can be treated more simply with an upper lid blepharoplasty. Occasionally we see patients in whom the brow and the upper eyelids together are both partly to blame for a tired or surly look.
There are brow-lift techniques which can be combined with an upper blepharoplasty to alter both conditions during the same surgery.
By all means book a free consultation at Adam Goodwin surgery if you believe that either your brow or your eyelids look heavy. For ladies, a classic symptom is a difficulty in putting eyeshadow on or in more extreme cases, eye liner or mascara. For men the classic description is looking tired or angry.
Your consultation will include an assessment of your general health, your skin, any recent Botox or non-surgical interventions, and then onto your brow position and upper eyelid skin. Your surgical options will be discussed. Rarely a simple dose of Botox under the brow may do enough to raise the brow by two or 3 mm. If not then surgical options can be discussed.
Brow Lift: The Surgery
There are several techniques for brow lifting through surgery. Each one has its own benefit and risk profile. An endoscopic brow lift requires scars in the scalp line which are usually well tolerated for ladies but not so much men especially with receding hairlines.
A direct brow-lift involves removing a small wedge of skin above the eyebrow giving a direct lift but resulting in a scar which although well hidden within the eyebrow hair is not entirely invisible. This technique is best left for men with bushy eyebrows rather than women with brows that are mostly drawn on.
Additional techniques involve a small scar in the hairline for a sliding brow lift, a transverse scar in the hairline for a temporal brow lift, or an upper blepharoplasty scar when combined with the upper blepharoplasty surgery. Each option will be discussed in detail as some are better than others for you as an individual.
It can be quite confusing when reading online about all of the different brow-lift techniques. By all means do so however and bring any questions or confusion with you to your consultation.
Depending on which technique you choose, it may be done simply as an outpatient under local anaesthetic up to, in more invasive procedures, with a general anaesthetic as a day case procedure.
Brow Lift Recovery
Once again, recovery is difficult to describe as each technique has its own recovery profile. The location of scars and associated swelling and bruising will be factors associated with the speed of recovery.
Again The recovery for the particular technique you choose will be described in detail as well the post-op care removal of sutures if necessary and follow up process.
Brow Lift Surgery Complications
Complications are varied and again depend on the technique used. Scars although well hidden are inevitable and the type of scars and location will be discussed. Bruising and swelling are also inevitable as with any surgery. Most brow lift techniques create only a limited lift and disappointment is always a possibility. Asymmetry before surgery is unlikely to be completely alleviated with surgery. Furthermore asymmetry can be exacerbated or caused by a more successful brow-lift on one side compared to the other. These are all complications that we will discuss before embarking on surgery.
Much rarer, nerve damage creating either weakness or changing sensation to the scalp can be caused by brow lift surgery. Although rare, any of these complications can occur and it’s important to accept that with brow-lift, as with any surgery there are no guarantees of a successful or perfect result.
Brow Lift Surgery
45 - 90
Time in Theatre
Time in Hospital
Recovery to Comfort
Recovery back to work
Back to full exercise