January 24, 2016

How to fix problem eyes


How many times has it happened that your mind is alert and your senses fresh but your eyes don’t resonate that? How many times are the windows to your soul dull and lifeless, even if that’s the last thing you’re feeling? Instep finds out how to fix those unwanted dark circles and fat deposits that take the sparkle away from your eyes.

Have you ever wondered why people think you look sad or tired when you actually aren’t? A study in the medical journal, Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, suggests that if the problem isn’t your mood, it might be your face. Facial features - particularly the area around the eye - affect one’s facial expressions more than we’d like to think. Luminescent skin will make our appearance fresh even if we’re feeling as dead as a doorknob.

It is scary to look into the mirror and see under-eye bags or circles. Even if you apply concealer and do your best to avoid tired-looking eyes, the puffiness and dark shadows seem to stick around. Whether it is the dark circles that are bothering you or the fatty deposits under the eyes, one can easily get rid of these imperfections. We spoke to Dr Tasneem Nakhoda for her expert advice on clinically proven results.

Fat eyes

The fatty-looking deposits in the skin near the eyes are medically termed as Xanthelasma Palpebrum. Dr Tasneem Nakhoda, dermatologist at the Lasersoft skin clinic in Karachi, defines Xanthelasma as "cholesterol deposits on the eye lids." This mainly happens because of high cholesterol, however, "it does not mean that every patient who has Xanthelasma has high blood cholesterol, it could be idiopathic, which means, without any reason," says Dr Tasneem.

When it comes to the treatment, Dr Tasneem says, "If the patient has high cholesterol, then the physician can prescribe exercise, diet and appropriate drugs." However, if it’s not due to high cholesterol, "there are lots of treatments available, from Chemical Cautery with Trichloroacetic acid (TCA), Cryosurgery with liquid nitrogen to radio frequency and CO2 laser," she elaborates.

Besides, "surgical excision of the lesion is a good option and I decide the mode of treatment depending on the patient’s preference," she adds. Here is a list of possible treatments available to get rid of these fat deposits around the eyes.

1. Chemical Cautery

It is a technique that applies Trichloroacetic acid (TCA), a caustic chemical to remove the yellowish, fatty deposits that develop around the eyelids. The strength of the chemical and number of sittings involved depends on the type and site of the lesion.

It is done after numbing the area with anesthesia, the cautery heats the treated tissue to a certain temperature after which it burns off. The treatment takes just a couple of minutes and is less expensive than other alternatives. The results are similar to - or even better than - the more hyped laser alternative.

2. Cryosurgery

It is a minimally invasive process in which the surface of the skin is frozen with extremely cold liquid nitrogen. This creates a blister underneath the lesion and as the new skin forms under the blister, the abnormal skin on the top peels off. It quickly removes the lesion with minimal scarring and takes about 1-3 weeks for the layer to remove after the new layer has formed.

It is one of the most suitable ways to get rid of surface skin growth and is relatively inexpensive, safe and reliable.

Sad, sagging eyes

Despite exercise and intensive night care, it can get hard to avoid loose and unattractive skin around the eyes. The older you get, the tougher it becomes.

1. Radiofrequency

This technology is used for non-surgical treatment of early signs of loose or sagging skin, ideal for those who want to avoid any surgical procedure. It helps reduce wrinkles and fatty lumps around the eyes with no swelling or bruising. It typically requires six treatments and the results are progressive with hardly any side effects.

2. CO2 laser

In this method, a carbon dioxide (CO2) laser for skin resurfacing removes the outer layer of damaged skin using advanced laser technology. This brings out the underlying skin which is cleaner, softer and smoother. It is one of the most commonly used laser skin treatment for those who do not require much tightening as it doesn’t remove the bags entirely.

5. Blepharoplasty

It is a surgical procedure used to remove prominent puffiness on the eye lids and fill the hollows underneath. This can be done at the same time with some other treatment to eliminate redundant skin on the eye lids. Once it is done, the results are beautiful and long lasting, with smooth eyelids without puffiness.

Dark circles

"Dark circles are multi-factorial and, so, no one treatment can work on all patients," says Dr Tasneem. In order to get rid of dark circles, "we can prescribe vitamins to creams." There are other options as well, including Q-switched lasers (removes unwanted brown spots from the skin) and Mesotherapy (a non-surgical cosmetic medicine treatment).

"I find Carboxytherapy, along with detox injections, to be most effective in the majority of my patients," shares Dr Tasneem