When the word surgery comes to mind, it might conjure images of reconstructive knee surgery or open heart surgery, but probably not eyelid surgery. Also called an eyelid lift, surgery on the eyelid is a lesser known option for relief from certain symptoms and diseases. It is most commonly performed by plastic surgeons. It also serves vast cosmetic applications for people looking to help their eyes fight the effects of gravity. There are over a dozen main problems that lead to eyelid surgery, but the three explained below are the most common.
Some people suffer from chronic involuntary spasms of the eyelid muscle, called blepharospasm, that make that day-long bothersome twitching feel like a walk in the park. Blepharospasm can also involve other face and neck muscles. Most common after the age of 50, it eventually morphs into a debilitating disorder that only becomes worse with stress, bright lights, and fatigue. Surgery to fix this problem involves excising the involved muscles to decrease the spasms.
Ectropion and Entropion
Both of these conditions involve the lower eyelid and lashes. Ectropion describes the lower eyelid and lashes sagging and turning outward, while entropion is the term used for inward rolling of the lower lid and lashes.
An eyelid lift to fix ectropion and entropion becomes an issue for cosmetic as well as medical reasons. When the lower lids sag and turn out in extropion, the lids and lashes can’t sweep across the surface of the cornea as they should. This leads to tearing and discomfort. On the other hand, entropian results in the eyelashes rubbing against and tearing the cornea. Fortunately, the surgery to fix both issues are similar and fairly simple outpatient procedures that require only a week of light recovery.
Cosmetic and reconstructive eyelid surgery is a world of its own with many specialties to resolve any eyelid problem that may exist.