What does the treatment involve?
The treatment for ptosis is usually surgery. In determining whether surgery is advisable, the individual’s age, general health, severity of the ptosis and whether one or both eyelids are involved is considered. Measurement of the eyelid height, evaluation of the strength of the muscles that open and close the eyelids, and observation of the eye’s movement will aid in determining what surgical procedure is most appropriate.
Depending on the function of the muscles in the eyelid different surgical procedures are available. Some procedures are performed through the internal surface of the eyelid with no cutting of the skin at all, more commonly an incision hidden in the lid crease skin is made so that excess skin can be removed at the same time. The operation is under sedation and local anaesthesia.
In children general anaesthesia is required.
How will I look immediately after surgery?
Swelling and bruising can last 3 days to 3 weeks, but usually within 1-2 weeks most of the obvious signs of recent surgery have resolved. If the lid crease needs reforming at the time of surgery, postoperative swelling may be more prominent.
What is the recovery time?
Most patients will take 3-5 days off work. Physical activity in the first week should be minimal and then building up to a normal level over the next two weeks.
What are the risks?
Any surgery carries risks, however the risks for this procedure are low and will be discussed fully at the time of your consultation.
How long do the results of the surgery last?
The muscle that lifts the eyelid is shortened and in some people the muscle can degenerate with time and so will allow the lid to again drop. This is unusual and if it occurs as a rule the procedure can be repeated with good effect.
Our tissues change as we age and surgery does not stop the ageing process. Also, other changes around the eyelids such as brow position changes can undermine the beneficial effect of the surgery.
Is there anyone who shouldn't have this surgery?
There are very few people who cannot have this procedure. In most cases this procedure attracts a rebate from Medicare and private health funds.