Causes of and Treatment for “Droopy Eyes” (Ptosis)

Droopy Eyelid (Ptosis) Repair Surgery

It’s long been said that “the eyes are the windows of the soul”. But drooping eyelids can make a person look sleepy, tired, older than are, and even angry or ornery. One or both eyelids can droop and if the drooping becomes severe it can interfere with vison.

There are also a number of causes of “droopy eyelids” (medically called “ptosis” or “blepharoptosis”) – from heredity and aging to underlying medical conditions.  Ptosis is a condition in which the drooping lid is caused by a lax eyelid muscle and not just excess or saggy eyelid skin.

The good news is that if you’re sick-and-tired tired of looking tired because of droopy eyelids, top board-certified Birmingham, MI plastic surgeon Dr. Ali can help. In this article he discusses the solution to droopy eyelids that help you look younger and see better.

What Causes Droopy Eyelids

The skin and muscles above the eye are very delicate – but are also subject to almost constant use: blinking, watching, reading, looking at screens and making facial expressions. And there are many factors that can cause this important but fragile area of the body to droop and sag over time.

Medical conditions including congenital defects, muscle disorders, nerve disorders, or diseases such as Myasthenia Gravis can cause the eyelids to droop. Drooping can also sometimes be associated with rubbing the eyelids or allergies.

In extremely rare cases, a droopy eyelid is the result of a more serious condition, such as a stroke, brain tumor, or cancer of the nerves or muscles.

Eyelid drooping can also be present at birth due to a condition called congenital ptosis. If this occurs during childhood, it is important to correct it as soon as possible to prevent problems with eyesight. But, in most case, eyelid ptosis develops later in life due to the stretching or weakening of the eyelid muscle.

Eyelid Ptosis vs Excess Skin

When the issue is simply excess, sagging eyelid skin that rests on their upper eyelashes, it can be remedies with an “eyelid lift” surgery – medically called blepharoplasty.

But ptosis is caused by weakness or stretching of the actual eyelid muscle, not sagging skin. Eyelid ptosis only refers to upper eyelid drooping and not that of the lower eyelids. Eyelid ptosis is usually more severe that sagging skin and can often cause the eyelid to cover the pupil of the eye, obstructing vision.

Treating Drooping Eyelids

The best treatment for a patient’s droopy eyelid will depends on the specific underlying cause and the severity of the ptosis. If the droopy eyelid is caused by an underlying medical condition, patients should be treated for that illness or disorder – which will often stop the eyelids from sagging.

And if the condition is the result of age or something you were born with, as long as it isn’t blocking vision, in many cases there is no medical necessity to do anything. However, many patients opt for plastic surgery to reduce the drooping caused by ptosis for cosmetic reasons.

And for children with ptosis, doctors sometimes recommend surgery to prevent the onset of a condition called amblyopia (lazy eye).

Eyelid ptosis repair surgery is typically performed with only local anesthesia and oral sedation. During surgery for ptosis, the plastic surgeon will make an extremely small incision and then tighten the levator muscle – lifting the eyelid up into the desired position.

It is essential to see a skilled and experience board-certified plastic surgeon like Dr. Ali for this procedure, to ensure that a natural expression is preserved and that the eyelid is not placed too high or too low.

After ptosis surgery, the upper eyelid will be swollen and bruised for a week or two. While you can resume normal activities within a day or two, it is crucial not to rub the eyelids at all during this time.

Droopy Eye (Ptosis) Plastic Surgeon | Birmingham, MI

Dr. Ali has performed several hundred eyelid repair surgeries, including ptosis repair for droopy eye muscles, eyelid lifts, upper or lower blepharoplasty, and brow lift surgery. He will thoroughly examine your eyelids to help identify the cause of the sagging or drooping and recommend the best procedure for your individual needs.

Droopy Eye Repair Surgery | Birmingham, MI: 248-335-7200