Located in Beverly Hills, La Peer Health Systems’ Orbital Surgery Center of Excellence specializes in treating the eye area including bones, muscles, and tissue of the midface. Our oculoplastic surgeons skillfully and carefully perform eyelid retraction, as well as reconstructive surgery of the eye socket and eyelid.

We specialize in eyelid and facial surgery and use the latest technology in surgery, including minimal incision techniques, to provide quicker recovery times and natural outcomes.

Eyelid Retraction

Often associated with Grave’s Disease or thyroid eye disease, eyelid retraction is a condition in which the eyelids are too wide open and the lid moves away, retracting from the surface of the eye. This can cause concern since eyelid is the main form of protection of the eye. This condition can be similar to a windshield wiper on a car that is bent and not touching the glass.

Causes of Eyelid Retraction

Eyelid retraction can be caused by thyroid eye disease or even a result of loss of tone while aging. Other causes of eyelid retraction include scarring from any previous surgery in the orbital area or trauma. This condition can be irritating in that the lid no longer functions to clean and lubricate the surface of the eye.

Symptoms of Eyelid Retraction

The main symptoms associated with retracted eyelids include a wide-eyed appearance, ocular redness, and pain. Pain is not always present, but patients often complain of pressure in the orbit. Orbital swelling due to inflammation can also be seen. Other types of symptoms of this condition can include:

  • Irritation
  • Grittiness
  • Photophobia
  • Tearing
  • Blurred vision
  • Double vision
  • Dryness
  • Corneal problems

Eyelid Retraction Surgery

At the Orbital Surgery Center of Excellence, there are several techniques our surgeons use in the treatment of retracting eyelids. The first steps in treatment for eyelid retraction is to protect your eyes using lubricating drops and ointment and a bandage contact lens. Surgery then can be performed to lower the upper eyelid margins or raise the lower eyelid margins. Placing the eyelids in a more normal position will improve comfort and overall appearance of the eyes. In cases where both upper eyelids are retracted, an incision is often used to lower the eyelids and remove any extra fat around the area.

Treatment of advanced cases consists of implanting a graft from the ear or mouth as a spacer to extend and reposition the lid against the eye. If only one upper eyelid is retracted, an internal transconjunctival approach is used and a skin incision can be avoided. Lower eyelid retraction may require the use of an eyelid spacer. An eyelid spacer acts as a buttress to hold up the lower eyelid during the healing process. Upper and lower eyelid retraction repair generally improves patient comfort and appearance.

When choosing a surgeon to perform eyelid retraction surgery, look for oculoplastic surgeon. An oculoplastic surgeon is a cosmetic and reconstructive facial surgeon who specializes in the eyelids, orbit, and tear drain system.  This is an extremely important factor in the results of your operation.

Eyelid Retraction Surgery FAQs

How long does eyelid retraction surgery take?

At our surgical center in Beverly Hills, eyelid retraction surgery is usually an outpatient procedure and can be preformed in just a couple hours. It is recommended that you arrange for a friend or family member to drive you to and from your appointment at La Peer.

Is eyelid retraction dangerous?

While person’s eyelids are retracted, it exposes the eye leaving it unprotected. This can make eyelid retraction very dangerous. Dry eye, swelling, and pain can also be symptoms of retracted eyelids.

Contact the Orbital Surgery Center of Excellence

To speak with one of our doctors at Orbital Surgery Center of Excellence about Eyelid Retraction, please contact us at  (888) 559-4341.

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