Pediatric Ptosis (Droopy Eyelids)
Ptosis in Children
Some children may have a droopy upper eyelid on one or both sides. Ptosis is the medical term for a droopy eyelid and may be present from birth or early infancy.
Ptosis occurs when the muscle that lifts the eyelid either forms poorly or is not well connected to the eyelid which results in the eyelid hanging low and potentially hindering vision. It is vital to have a child with ptosis evaluated as soon as possible. The low-hanging eyelid can interfere with vision development in young children and lead to amblyopia where the brain essentially turns the eye off. Children with ptosis need to have regular eye exams to monitor their vision development.
Treatment of Ptosis in Children
Most of the time, ptosis is mild, and vision develops normally so we would not do any surgery until the child is older and the long-term cosmetic result would be better. Some families and children will not be that bothered by the ptosis and may choose to never have surgery for it. However, if ptosis is threatening vision development, then we might need to perform surgery early to lift the eyelid and clear the line of sight which can be done by either tightening a weak but functioning eyelid muscle or with a poorly functioning muscle, by suspending the eyelid itself from either the eyebrow/forehead.
For More Information
Recently we posted a video demonstrating a specific and somewhat unusual type of congenital ptosis called Marcus-Gunn Jaw-Winking Ptosis. You can find that video in the video section on our Facebook page or our YouTube channel.