What is an oculoplastic surgeon?

By Joseph Walrath, MD | Oct 14, 2011 | Cosmetic, Dr. Walrath, Qualifications

Oculoplastic surgeons are ophthalmologists (eye doctors) who have completed subsequent fellowship training in periocular and facial plastic surgery.

Oculoplastic surgeons have a special expertise in treating plastic surgical problems that can impact visual function and ocular comfort. Typical problems treated involve:

  • the eyelids
  • the surface lining (conjunctiva) of the eyelids and eyeball
  • the muscles that move the eye
  • the soft tissue of the eye socket
  • the bony walls of the eye socket
  • the tear drain (nasolacrimal) system within the eyes and nose
  • the cheek (midface)
  • the forehead
Physicians who train in other fields occasionally refer to themselves as oculoplastic surgeons if they operate near the eyes.  This is misleading.  Only oculoplastic surgeons trained as ophthalmologists understand the anatomy and physiology of the periocular region to a sufficient degree to allow for appropriate diagnostic and surgical decision-making to ensure the best possible outcomes for patients.
Oculoplastic surgeons take care of a high volume of both cosmetic and noncosmetic (“functional”) patients.  We have a great deal of experience restoring normal function to patients.  Therefore, when it comes to cosmetic surgery, we have a better track record preseving normal function while providing safe and reliable cosmetic periocular surgery.