If you have droopy upper eyelids, you may have heard the term “ptosis.” You also may be wondering whether you have ptosis, what can be done about the condition and whether you should consult us about eyelid surgery in New York or see a different kind of doctor. Let’s explore a little bit.
What is Ptosis?
According to the Merriam-Webster medical dictionary, the word means “a sagging or prolapse of an organ or part especially a drooping of the upper eyelid.” In the world of cosmetic surgery, “ptosis” is often used to describe saggy upper eyelids that happen as a result of aging, but it’s also a term many plastic surgeons use for breasts that droop after childbirth, weight loss or just due to the passage of time.
To most physicians, however, when applied to the upper lids, ptosis means that the levitator muscle that lifts the lids isn’t functioning properly. The American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) says that when it occurs in children it’s usually present from birth, and the levitator muscle should be surgically repaired to prevent other problems. Read how to identify ptosis in a child here.
In adults, ptosis occurs for a number of reasons, according to the AAO. The levitator muscle can be affected by aging, trauma to the eye, diseases, tumors, surgery or even as a complication from Botox injections—especially if performed by an inexperienced provider.
The Right Procedure for You
So, how do you know if you have a problem with your levitator muscles or if your droopy upper lids are simply due to redundant skin? And, more importantly, when you consult us about eyelid surgery in New York, how do we know?
During your consultation, we will collect a variety of information about your eyelids. We’ll take a medical history and ask how long you’ve had droopy lids, if you’ve experienced recent trauma or had Botox injections and so on. We’ll examine you carefully as well, paying particular attention to exactly how your eyelids function. If only one is droopy, you probably have a case of ptosis. If both droop due to muscle problems, it could be due to an underlying disease such as myasthenia gravis. After 30+ years of successful cosmetic surgery practice, and with many hundreds of successful New York eyelid surgeries to our credit, we’ll know if your issue is aging skin, damaged muscles or both.
If your levitator muscles need repair, we’ll refer you to an ophthalmologist or ocular plastic surgeon. These professionals have highly specialized training and we respect their skills. Delicate eye muscles are best addressed by one of them, and, as an aside, you may be better able to secure coverage from your insurance company by choosing one of these specialists.
Blepharoplasty in New York
For most people approaching middle age and beyond, droopy upper eyelids are usually caused by skin that has stretched and sagged. If this is the case for you, we would be delighted to help! New York eyelid surgery—or blepharoplasty—is one of our favorite procedures because it is so satisfying for the men and women we work with. Read this real patient story and you’ll see why. You can also read up on our philosophies about blepharoplasty surgery, risks and recovery, and the advantages of working with us here.
Having so much experience with eyelid surgery and complete confidence in our skills, we can also extend the procedure to meet all your needs. It’s very common for patients to benefit from a brow lift as well as blepharoplasty, to address forehead skin that has descended with time. We also perform surgery on the lower lids to remove bags and sags, and we’ve expanded that technique to pull up cheek skin in a procedure we call a mid facelift. This operation softens wrinkles in the triangular area below the eyes and down to the corners of the mouth, including naso labial folds.
Feeling confused about what’s right for you? The best way to figure that out is to come in to see us. We’ll give you our honest assessment and, if appropriate, a recommendation for the procedure that’s optimal for you. Call us today at 212-570-6080.