For more than 20 years, Cosmetic Oculofacial Plastic Surgeon Dr Amiya Prasad has helped patients from around the world affected by ptosis, commonly referred to as “droopy eyelid” see and look better by performing ptosis surgery.
There are many different types of ptosis which can affect your vision and appearance. Dr. Prasad will perform a ptosis evaluation and recommend a treatment plan. Contact us for a consultation and learn more about the ptosis procedure below.
PTOSIS (pronounced “TOE-sis”) or a droopy eyelid, refers to a drooping of the upper eyelid of one (unilateral ptosis) or both eyes (bilateral ptosis). The droop may be barely noticeable, or the eyelid can descend over the entire pupil. It can affect both children (congenital ptosis) and adults (acquired ptosis). The most common ptosis cause is related to aging (involutional ptosis).
It is often seen that people with a droopy eye raise their eyebrows unconsciously (resulting in horizontal forehead lines). If the skin is relatively tight, some eyelid elevation can happen with eyebrow raising. Ptosis repair is not performed by most cosmetic and plastic surgeons as ptosis surgery is a highly specialized and delicate procedure. Ptosis correction surgery is only performed by oculofacial/oculoplastic surgeons who have training in both facial cosmetic surgery and ophthalmology like Dr. Amiya Prasad.
Ptosis which is present since birth is typically the result of a developmental defect in the levator muscle. Adult, or acquired ptosis, is usually associated with the thinning or detachment of the levator muscle tendon also called the “levator aponeurosis” .
A droopy eyelid can also be the result of trauma after significant eyelid swelling. It may also be caused can also by neurologic conditions such as myasthenia gravis, Horner’s Syndrome, and 3rd nerve or oculomotor nerve palsy.
The most obvious sign of ptosis is the drooping upper eyelid. Depending on how severely the eyelid droops, people with ptosis are often concerned about the cosmetic appearance. Vision may also be affected depending on how low the eyelid is relative to the pupil. Sometimes people with ptosis tilt their heads back to try to see or raise their eyebrows constantly try to lift the eyelids.
The degree of droopiness is individual. If you think you may have ptosis, compare a recent photo of your face with one from the past to see if your eyelid position has changed. As you get older, there’s a little bit more stretch and that compensatory action doesn’t work as well.
It’s very common for people who have a long history of ptosis to say it’s worse at the end of the day (heavy eyelids). Some people with ptosis are particularly bothered if the eye that is being affected is the dominant eye.
Congenital ptosis: a term which means the droopy eyelid is present since birth due to the muscle responsible for lifting the eyelid (levator muscle) not developing fully. The levator muscle doesn’t contract completely nor does it fully relax. Congenital ptosis can get worse as a person gets older because of the natural structural changes of the face which occurs with aging.
In cases of congentital ptosis where the levator muscle is so poorly developed that the muscle can’t function, then a highly specialized surgery called a frontalis sling is required. The frontalis sling involves the anchoring the upper eyelid to the frontalis muscle using a material such as “fascia lata” and silicone. The normal function of the frontalis muscle is to raise the eyebrow.
Acquired Ptosis: Refers to ptosis which is not congenital and can have several different causes. In adults, the most common type of ptosis is called involutional ptosis, which typically occurs slowly with aging. This condition is due to a stretching or thinning of the tendon of the levator muscle that lifts the eyelids called the levator aponeurosis.
Many people with this condition are frustrated by the strain of keeping their eyes open particularly as the day progresses. This type of ptosis can also occur after cataract surgery, LASIK, laser vision correction and other eye procedures. Acquired ptosis can also be related to neurologic conditions including stroke, myasthenia gravis, Horner’s syndrome, and 3rd nerve palsy.
Ptosis Caused by a Prosthetic Eye: Prosthetic eyes (artificial eyes) can cause stretch and thinning on the levator muscle (the muscle that lifts the eyelid). The physical weight, shape and lack of natural lubrication can contribute to the progression of ptosis. The ocularist can change the shape of the prosthesis to push the eyelid upward.
Unfortunately, this can result in the prosthesis becoming heavy and uncomfortable. Ptosis correction can help the ocularist make the prosthesis smaller and more comfortable.
When dealing with congenital ptosis, if the child has no significant ptosis where it is affecting visual information before the age of 6, then a correction can be done at a later time when it’s more of an aesthetic decision. If the ptosis is affecting vision before the age of 6, ptosis surgery can be performed to insure better visual development. Consultation with a pediatric ophthalmologist is recommended to confirm the visual condition and ongoing management.
Ptosis in children is often from a poorly developed levator muscle that can not lift the eyelid. In such cases of congenital ptosis, children would need a frontalis sling procedure at a young age so that proper, unobstructed vision can also develop. Children can also find it easier to adapt to raising their eyelids with the frontalis (eyebrow) muscle at a younger age than those who have a frontalis sling procedure in their teens or as adults.
Ptosis surgery is a highly specialized procedure that can’t be performed by most cosmetic surgeons who perform other types of eyelid surgery such as blepharoplasty. Since the procedure involves working with the delicate levator muscle which raises and lowers the upper eyelid, choosing the right surgeon is very important. Oculoplastic surgeons or oculofacial plastic surgeons are specially trained in delicate procedures for the eye including surgery (ophthalmology) and specialized training in plastic surgery of the eyes (ophthalmic plastic and reconstructive surgery).
Dr. Amiya Prasad is a cosmetic and reconstructive oculofacial plastic surgeon with over 20 years of experience performing highly specialized ptosis surgery.
Ptosis surgery may be necessary when the droopy eyelid has caused the upper eyelid to partially or completely block the vision. In children, aggressive management is often required in order to allow the vision to develop normally.
To examine the eyelid, Dr. Prasad does a ptosis evaluation. He looks at the center of the pupil and how it relates to the upper eyelid called the marginal reflex distance. When it’s above a certain level, there is no ptosis, but if it’s below a certain level, there is ptosis. Ptosis is also graded: mild, moderate or severe.
For the people concerned with asymmetry, it is important to note that it is not only limited to the soft tissue of the eyelids such as the skin and levator muscle, but sometimes related to the natural underlying bone structure. The human face is not perfectly asymmetric. If someone looks at their face long enough, they can notice the subtle asymmetry of the two sides.
Ptosis is a term which means “droop”.
When the eyelid droops, we call it “eyelid ptosis” Ptosis or eyelid droop is often referred to as a “lazy eye”. If you or someone you know has one or both eyes looking partially closed, you may be looking at ptosis.
In most situations, appearance and vision can be improved with ptosis surgery. I’ll help you understand what is responsible for the most common types of ptosis as well as how I work with my patients to formulate a strategy that will have the most likelihood for success.
I’m Dr Amiya Prasad. I’m a Board Certified Cosmetic Surgeon and Fellowship Trained Oculoplastic Surgeon. I’ve been in practice in Manhattan and Long Island for over 20 years. I routinely treat a wide range of ptosis patients in my practice.
Many of my patients are patients who’ve undergone previous ptosis surgery done elsewhere. When I meet a patient with ptosis, I start by reviewing the history to see if you were born with ptosis or if you developed ptosis later. When someone is born with ptosis, it’s referred to as “Congenital ptosis”.
If you develop ptosis later, its referred to as “Acquired ptosis”. In either situation, I first establish that there is no neurologic cause for ptosis before discussing surgical options.
Ptosis is essentially the result of a condition affecting the “levator muscle”. The “levator muscle” is the muscle that lifts the eyelid, like the word “elevator”
The type of surgery I recommend depends on the cause of the ptosis as well as the strength of the levator muscle. Surgical correction typically involves either some type of muscle advancement or shortening. If the muscle is too weak, then surgery is performed to connect the muscle that lifts the eyebrows to the eyelid.
When patients considering ptosis surgery come to our office, they express a desire to have their eyes look open and as symmetric as possible. Very often, patients come in requesting cosmetic upper eyelid surgery for sagging skin and don’t realize that they also have ptosis.
During my evaluation, I explain how excess skin over the eyelids which is referred to as “dermatochalasis” is different from drooping of the eyelid caused by the levator muscle which is of course “ptosis”.
There are often times when people have had cosmetic eyelid surgery or upper eyelid blepharoplasty elsewhere and they come in concerned that they still look tired. The reason for this is that they had upper eyelid skin removed but nothing was done to address the underlying muscle responsible for they eyelid droop.
Most ptosis surgery is for acquired ptosis due to a progressive stretching or thinning of the levator muscle. There are some patients who come in saying they’ve always had low upper eyelids which were referred to as “bedroom eyes” and that as time went on, the eyelids became lower and made them look tired. The objective in surgery is position the eyelid lifting muscles which include the levator muscle as well as another muscle called “Mueller’s muscle” in an advantageous manner to improve the position of the eyelids. I explain to my patients that these muscles are very sensitive and achieving the ideal result can be challenging.
The surgery is performed under local anesthesia with light intravenous sedation. In most cases, I have the patient open their eyes so I can monitor the height and shape of the eyelid. In fact, I routinely will sit the patient up during surgery and evaluate the appearance of the eyes in a way which more accurately reflects being vertical in real life.
This particular aspect of the surgery allows me to anticipate more accurately the outcome we’re aiming for. I do qualify the predictability of the procedure with my patients by explaining that 95% of the time, the eyes look right and there’s a satisfactory outcome.
Approximately 5% of the time, enhancements are necessary and are performed when swelling is significantly diminished which is usually after 3 months. Eyelid swelling is a normal part of the healing process.
The extent of the swelling is dependent on the extent of the surgery and the individual patient’s physiology. In the first 2 days after the surgery, cold compresses help decrease the initial swelling after surgery.
After the first 2 days, the clearing of swelling depends on the amount of swelling and circulation. I encourage my patients to be up and about walking, talking and smiling and if they’re planning to be more sedentary, warm compresses can help. Most people go back to work after 1 week.
I see our patients routinely more frequently in the first 2 months after surgery and then in approximately 3 month intervals for a year after surgery. Generally, I expect appearance to by close to the final appearance around 6 months. If a patient has a history of allergies, sinus problems, smoking or other circulation issues, swelling can persist longer than is typical.
Ptosis surgery can have a significant impact in your appearance and confidence. Functionally, eyelid ptosis can also affect your vision, and visual development in children who have it between birth and the age of 6.
If you’re questioning whether or not you have ptosis and if you should have surgery, meet with Fellowship trained Oculofacial Plastic Surgeon and learn about your situation and options.
I hope you found this information helpful…thank you for your question.
In adult patient with ptosis, Dr. Prasad would perform levator advancement surgery where the muscle is moved forward without sacrificing any of it (in contrast to “levator muscle resection”). The procedure is performed with the goal of positioning the eyelid to the appropropriate level.
During surgery, in order to achieve the desired height, symmetry and cosmetic appearance, Dr. Prasad has his patients open and close their eyes. Typically, he will sit the patient up during the surgery and have them open and close their eyes so that the muscle and the position of the eyelid is observed with gravity and may be adjusted. The patient is comfortable while the muscle is being adjusted.
The procedure is typically performed under local anesthesia with intravenous (IV) sedation. The surgery can take anywhere from one to two hours.
In order to prepare for ptosis surgery, it’s important to minimize the risks for complications during surgery such as bleeding and infection. Avoiding blood thinners such as aspirin, NSAIDS (such as ibuprofen), Vitamin E, and Ginkoba. Make sure you review all your medications including vitamins and supplements with Dr. Prasad before your procedure.
If you have any chronic eye problems such as dry eye or allergic conjunctivitis, its very important you manage these conditions with eye drops and other medications as necessary prior to surgery. Discuss any eye conditions you have with Dr. Prasad prior to surgery. As with any surgery, a full review of your medical history, current medications and risks associated with any systemic disease will be discussed with Dr. Prasad.
Side effects are limited generally to swelling and bruising around the eye and cheek area. Dry eye can also occur temporarily after any eyelid procedure, but since ptosis surgery results in more exposure of the eye, its recommended to have artificial tears to keep the eyes lubricated after surgery.
Post-surgical instructions are provided for the specific type of ptosis surgery you undergo. General instructions include: the application of antibiotic ointment, cold compresses and other details.
Follow up appointment after surgery will be scheduled with you. Typically patients are seen after 1 week for suture removal for procedures such as levator advancement. In other types of ptosis surgery, you may need to be seen earlier.
After the surgery, it’s routine to remove sutures after 1 week. For most people who undergo ptosis surgery, the recovery period to return to work is about 1 week. Some bruising may be present for about 2 weeks.
Swelling of the eyelid can be present for up to a year, but the majority of patients find that within a few weeks of surgery, they’re appearance is acceptable and does not draw any attention. If you want to correct your ptosis before an important event like a wedding, the more time you allow for healing, the happier you will be with the final result.
Risks related to the ptosis surgery include under correction (eyelid too low), over correction (eyelid too high), eye exposure, scarring, infection, bleeding, excessive scarring and undesirable cosmetic result. Ptosis surgery is performed in ways to minimize these risks. If the eyelid shape, height or symmetry requires enhancement, additional surgery is indicated. Dr. Prasad is committed to helping his patients achieve the results which are most satisfactory and has a well established record of successful surgical outcomes.
While some people recommend alternatives solution to fix a droopy eye, by getting enough sleep, using injectable such as Botox or Restylane, and eye exercises with a patch to strengthen the levator muscle; none of those options will help correct the ptosis as well as surgery.
Blepharoptosis is another term for ptosis surgery, whereas blepharoplasty is a term to describe eye lift surgery – the cosmetic procedure for the upper or lower eyelid to improve the appearance around the eye for excess upper eyelid skin or puffy eye bags.
What is the difference between upper blepharoplasty and ptosis correction?
Hooding or drooping of the upper eyelids that gives you a tired look is often seen with normal facial aging if you are considering cosmetic enhancement of your upper eyelids to help you look more refreshed then you should know the difference between excess skin over the eyes and eye muscle related drooping eyelids why because these are two distinct issues and are managed very differently I often see patients who had cosmetic upper eyelid surgery performed elsewhere who still feel that they looked tired because of their drooping eyelids this often means that the operating surgeon didn’t address a condition called ptosis a medical term to describe a drooping upper eyelid I’ll discuss the difference between hooded upper eyelids and ptosis as well as how i address these conditions in my practice.
I’m Dr Amiya Prasad, I’m a diplomate of the American Board of Cosmetic Surgery and a Fellowship-trained oculofacial plastic and reconstructive surgeon I’ve been in practice in New York City and Long Island for over 25 years, I perform a range of cosmetic eyelid surgeries to treat issues like hooded upper eyelids puffy under eye bags and Asian double eyelid surgery as an oculoplastic surgeon. I trained first in ophthalmology so I perform specific types of eyelid surgery that’s usually not done by general plastic surgeons such as treating eyelid ptosis upper and lower eyelid retraction and treating eyelids affected by conditions like thyroid eye disease.
So how do we differentiate eyelid hooding from drooping upper eyelids or ptosis upper eyelid hooding is typically due to the eyelid skin stretching or sagging due to collagen loss and changes in skin elasticity as your upper eyelid skin changes it folds upon itself so there appears to be excess hooded skin over the eyes this condition is referred to as dermatochalasis when you have drooping eyelids or eyelid ptosis the position of the eyelid margin.
Where the edge of your eyelashes emerge is lower than it normally would be people with eyelid ptosis are often aware that one eyelid is actually lower than the other some people aren’t even aware that their eyelids have descended significantly and are delighted to experience how much better they feel when their eyes are actually more open other people have told me that they struggle to keep their eyes open and they feel fatigue from straining to keep their eyes open eyelid ptosis associated with aging is typically due to a stretching or detachment of the muscle that lifts the eyelid called the levator muscle levator is the word like the word elevator without the letter e interestingly ptosis can be present with dermatochalasis making the diagnosis of ptosis at times kind of challenging.
As I mentioned earlier the treatment strategy for hooded upper eyelids or dermatochalasis is different from eyelid ptosis so an accurate diagnosis is very important surgery for upper eyelid dermatochalasis is more than just skin deep the eyes are three-dimensional so addressing the deeper soft tissue is very important to achieve a natural and aesthetic result many patients express to me their concerns about being able to close their eyes after surgery they ask these types of questions because they’re aware of individuals who had eye-related problems due to the inability to properly close their eyes after aggressive upper eyelid skin removal.
I help people from around the world who have had this type of problem with advanced reconstructive procedures such as skin grafting to the upper eyelids to replace lost skin as an oculoplastic surgeon I’m familiar with dry eyes and other ophthalmologic issues which need to be factored in when planning cosmetic eyelid surgery.
I always say that eyes that look good function well my surgical aesthetic focuses on natural looking results which are more youthful and vibrant not plastic although redundant eyelid skin can be present at the same time as eyelid ptosis many people learn the hard way that removing eyelid skin alone will not treat eyelid ptosis.
As I stated earlier I see a lot of people who had upper eyelid surgery and then come to me to address their eyelid ptosis which wasn’t taken care of initially eyelid ptosis requires specialized surgery to shorten or reattach the levator muscle or another muscle called Mueller’s muscle I routinely perform cosmetic upper eyelid surgery or blepharoplasty with ptosis surgery I perform a lot of my ptosis procedures from the underside of the upper eyelid there are times when I only perform the ptosis surgery without making any incisions on the outside.
I perform upper eyelid blepharoplasty as well as ptosis correction surgery using local anesthesia with LITE IV sedation my patients avoid the side effects often seen with general anesthesia such as nausea and vomiting in addition to prolonged recovery from surgery so in closing I want to encourage anyone considering upper eyelid cosmetic surgery to understand the difference between upper eyelid hooding and upper eyelid ptosis if you suspect that you have ptosis as well as hooded upper eyelids a proper evaluation will help you have the procedures that are best suited for your situation.
I hope you found this information helpful thank you for your question
For most people, the eyesight has some improvement since the droopy eyelid can block part of or all of the pupil. Ptosis can cause a mild astigmatism, so after surgery, the cornea shape can change slightly requiring a change in eyeglass or contact lens prescription.
The cost of the droopy eyelid surgery is dependent on the type of procedure as well as the anesthesia and facility costs. Dr. Prasad’s offices have state-of-the-art surgical facilities in Manhattan, New York City and Garden City, Long Island. Fees are determined after Dr. Prasad performs your examination. Dr. Prasad’s practice does not participate in any insurance plans.
In order to correct a lazy eyelid, or eyelid ptosis, eyelid ptosis correction surgery is needed. Ptosis surgery involves going into the eyelid skin to work on the levator muscle. There are various techniques in ptosis eyelid surgery, but the basic principle is working on the levator muscle by shortening, or reattaching it so that the eyelid opens more effectively.
Dr. Prasad performs ptosis surgery frequently in his practice under local anesthesia with LITE IV sedation. The patient will be requested to open their eyes and look up to make sure the height, shape and contour are balanced. Ptosis surgery improves the appearance of a lazy eye when it is done with the best symmetry possible.
Oculoplastic surgeon Dr. Amiya Prasad is an expert in cosmetic and reconstructive eyelid surgery. Schedule your consultation with Dr. Prasad for your eyelid ptosis surgery today! Contact Dr. Prasad at his New York office at (212) 265-8877 or in his Garden City office at (516) 742-4636, or fill out the contact form below.