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Drooping eyelids (ptosis) is when the muscle that lifts the eyelid can be weak or lose strength over time.

Drooping eyelids (ptosis) can be a congenital problem (present from birth) or they can develop as you age. Mild ptosis may not need treatment. However if your ptosis is interfering with your vision your consultant may recommend ptosis correction.

What happens during ptosis correction?

Ptosis correction performed on adults is usually performed under local anaesthetic. The procedure usually takes 45 - 90 minutes depending on whether one or both eyelids are being corrected.

Local anaesthetic drops will be placed in your eye. Local anaesthetic will also be applied to your eyelid. Your surgeon will usually make a cut in the natural crease of skin on your eyelid. They will identify the muscle that lifts the lid and shorten it. The wound will be closed using dissolvable stitches.  
In children with congenital problems the operation is done under general anaesthetic.

Going home after ptosis correction

If you have local anaesthetic you should be able to go home a few hours after your surgery. Children who have general anaesthetic will need to stay in hospital until the effects of the anaesthetic have worn off. 

You will be given pain relief as the anaesthetic wears off. You may have a temporary patch or dressing covering your eye(s) so someone will need to drive you home. You may be given antibiotic drops to use in the weeks following your procedure. 

Your upper eyelid may be bruised and sore for 7-10 days. Keep your wound clean and dry and contact your GP if you see any signs of infection such as excess swelling, discharge, increased pain or redness.

You should avoid any strenuous activity for at least one week. Do not use eye makeup until your wound is totally healed. 

Discuss any return of work with your consultant.

As with any surgical procedure there can be complications including:

  • Pain
  • Bleeding
  • Bruising

Specific complications of ptosis correction may include:

  • Infection in the wound or your eye
  • Over-correction or under-correction of the eyelid
  • Eyelid can not close completely
  • Eyelids are not symmetrical

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