A number of conditions and factors can affect the position of the eyelids, ranging from age to injury. Below we’ve outlined some of the most common eyelid malposition conditions. If you think you have one of these conditions, don’t hesitate to contact our team of specialists at La Peer Health Systems’ Eyelid Surgery Center of Excellence. Simply call us at (888) 374-0367 or fill out our online form.
Ptosis is a condition in which the upper eyelid will not fully open. The most common causes of eyelids that won’t fully open include muscle weakness, nerve damage, and loose upper eyelid skin. Ptosis may also be present at birth, occur as a result of an eye injury or disease, or result as part of the aging process. The major problem with ptosis is that, left unchecked, it can impede vision, sometimes to a dangerous degree. Surgery is typically done to strengthen the eye muscle so the patient can lift the eyelid and see more clearly.
Retraction is the opposite condition of ptosis. Eyelid retraction causes the eyelid to open too far. The most common cause of this condition is thyroid eye disease (Grave’s disease). Both the upper and lower eyelids can be affected by retraction, which can make it impossible for the eye to close completely. Inability to close the eye may lead to over-exposure of light, irritation, and dryness of the eye. It may also lead to more serious conditions such as infection and scarring of the eye. Reverse ptosis surgery is typically performed to correct retraction.
Entropion is a type of eyelid malposition in which the eyelid begins to turn inward toward the eye. The result is a feeling of discomfort and irritation for the patient as the eyelashes and eyelid rub against the cornea. Patients with entropion may also experience excessive tearing. The most common cause of this condition is genetic. Treatment for entropion involves removing a small portion of the eyelid to tighten the muscles and tendons of the lid.
Ectropion is the opposite of entropion. Rather than turning inward, the eyelid turns away from the eye. This is most common with the lower lid. Without the eyelid in its proper place the eye often becomes dry and irritated. Ectropion puts the patient at risk for recurring infections as well as scarring. Many entropion patients experience constant tearing. Similar to entropion surgery, treatment for ectropion involves removing a small amount of the eyelid to tighten it on the eye.
While not technically an eyelid malposition, dermatochalasis leads to many of the same symptoms as the conditions above. With dermatochalasis, excess eyelid skin leads to hooding of the skin over the eyes. People with dermatochalasis tend to be seen as tired and older than they really are. The patient also has to worry about loss of sight due skin sagging over the field of vision.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Do many people get eyelid surgery?
A: Eyelid surgery is actually one of the most common cosmetic procedures performed in the United States, with an estimated 250,000 surgeries done each year.
Q: Am I eligible for eyelid surgery?
A: Eyelid surgery is a safe and minimally invasive procedure for which most people are eligible. However, you should always talk to your doctor about specific health concerns.
Q: Is eyelid surgery painful?
A: For most people there is very little pain involved. When the procedure is performed your skin will be numb. And when you work with a skilled and experienced surgeon like the ones at La Peer, the procedure will go by even faster.
Q: How long will it take to recover from eyelid surgery? Can I still go to work?
A: It is common to have some soreness and swelling for a week to 10 days after your surgery, but if they’re careful, most people can return to work shortly.
Q: Is eyelid surgery a medical procedure or is it cosmetic?
A: That depends on the specific surgery you have done and the severity of the problem it is addressing. But in many cases eyelid surgery is a mixture of both. The initial impetus for the procedure is often medical, but the result also ends up correcting an aesthetic flaw.
Contact a Los Angeles Eyelid Reconstruction Specialist
Do you find yourself struggling to see as well as you used to? Are your eyes constantly itching, burning, or tearing? Age, injury, and a number of other factors can affect the position of our eyelids, which can alter how we see the world. The good news is that there are a variety of simple surgical procedures available to restore your eyelids to their natural position. Not only will eyelid reconstruction help fix your vision, it will also make you look younger and healthier.
So if you’re thinking about taking action to restore your eyelid malposition, our team of eyelid reconstruction experts at the Eyelid Surgery Center of Excellence is here to help. Our state-of-the-art, newly renovated facility is the ideal place for a safe, caring, and comfortable procedure. Don’t hesitate to contact us at (888) 374-0367 to set up your consultation.
Next, read about ptosis.