The History of Cosmetic Eyelid Surgery

The first recorded documentation of blepharoplasty was in the first century AD , when Aulus Cornelius Celsus described the excision of skin for “relaxed upper eyelids” in De Re Medica. The term blepharoplasty dates back to 1817, when a German physician Von Graefe described a technique for repairing deformities caused by resection of cancer in the eyelids. In 1907, Conrad Miller wrote Cosmetic Surgery and the Correction of Featural Imperfections, the first book of cosmetic surgery. The second edition of this book, published in 1924, contained diagrams of incisions for upper and lower eyelid surgery. From the late 1940’s to even as recent as today, orbital fat removal had been an important part of this procedure. In the past 10 years, a new paradigm has emerged in periocular rejuvenation where advanced customized techniques allow re-establishment of youthful characteristics by relying less on removal of fat and more on restoration. The goal is to still look like you, just better.


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