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This leaflet explains what happens during upper eyelid repair surgery for ptosis (droopy eyelid). It includes the benefits, the risks and the alternatives. If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to speak with the doctors and nurses caring for you.

What is upper eyelid repair?

It is an operation used to treat a droopy upper eyelid (ptosis).

Why do I need this surgery?

You have a common condition called ptosis where your upper eyelid droops down. If the droopy eyelid is not treated it can affect your sight and make everyday tasks trickier. If you also have excess skin on your eyelid, you may also have this removed during surgery (blepharoplasty). For more information, please read our ‘Upper eyelid blepharoplasty repair for dermatochalasis’ leaflet.

What causes ptosis?

  • The commonest cause is age. As you get older, the muscle connection in your upper eyelid
    gradually gets stretched and so you cannot keep your eyelid fully open.
  • You may have been born with a droopy eyelid because the muscle that lifts it has not
    developed properly and is weaker than normal (congenital ptosis).
  • A lump or excess skin may make your eyelid heavier, weigh it down and make it droop.
  • A neurological (neuromuscular) cause is where the nerve supplying your eyelid-lifting muscle
    may be damaged or the muscle itself may be damaged.
  • You may have had surgery such as cataract surgery which involves stretching your eyelids
    using a speculum.