Conditions: Eyelid ptosis Children2018-12-06T13:07:26+00:00

Eyelid ptosis (Children) Overview

Talk to us about your current condition on:
020 7935 7990

The best way to figure out whether your specific condition can be treated or not is to give us a call. We can answer any questions you have and help you clarify which treatment options might be suitable for you.

There are different treatment options available for this condition and the most common ones are listed below:

  • Brow suspension

  • Strengthening Procedure

Learn more about treatment options

Eyelid ptosis (Children)

What is an Eyelid ptosis (Children)?

Eyelid ptosis in children is usually due to a congenitally fatty muscle that lifts the lids – as a result the muscle is not strong enough and the eyelid droops. If not treated promptly, the condition can result in permanent visual impairment.


The only way to treat this condition is by performing surgery to lift the eyelid.

The options include:

  • A brow suspension which allows the child to raise the eyelids by raising their eyebrows. In children with congenital ptosis we use different suspension materials to join the weak eyelid to the frontalis muscle in the forehead, so when the brow is raised, the eyelid is as well. In this procedure, a special suture is used (eg. Goretex® or Prolene®) or some tissue is transferred from the leg.
  • A strengthening procedure on the levator muscle (see below) via the skin crease or posterior incision.

Unless the ptosis is imparing the child’s vision, it is generally preferable to wait until the child is 3 or 4, as the results are usually better. However, if the eyelid covers the pupil, the risk of “lazy eye” is much higher so the surgery is more urgent and can be done from as young as three weeks.

Video: What is ptosis and how can you treat it?

Examination for Eyelid ptosis (Children)

A full ophthalmic examination is performed to check visual function, eye movement, the eyelids and the ocular surface. Then a full face examination is performed. It is common for photographs to be taken. Special eyelid measurements are taken to assess the degree and type of ptosis. This helps decide the specific surgery that may be required.

In children it is particularly important to assess if the drooping eyelid is causing visual impairment (amblyopia), as, when this is the case, it must be treated as soon as possible.

The child’s vision and eye movements are assessed with the help of an orthoptist. It may be necessary to check if glasses are required using drops and a refraction test.


Here’s what they say

“Dr. Jane Olver was fantastic! She was so caring and sweet and it was clear that she knew what she was doing – very professional! I am absolutely over the moon with my results now!”

Toni C.

“Jane Olver is your woman – I wish I had found her at the start. I will be forever grateful for her care and expertise.”

Nancy W.

“Just wanted to thank you for your exceptional assistance with my eye condition. I was so worried but you really helped me feel at ease.”

David T.

“I felt much better after speaking to you and being reassured. I am much calmer and actually got some sleep last night.”

Catherine M.
“I was deeply impressed by the politeness and empathy shown to me. I found the surgery very peaceful and beautifully decorated and I hope to see Jane again soon.”
Jeffrey W.
“I highly recommend Jane Olver. The whole experience was calm and highly professional.”
Lorraine M.
“I am writing to you to say thank you to you, Cloe and Jane for taking care of me this week. You were all really lovely and professional and I am very grateful. Big cheer for The Clinica London Team.”
Rick A.
“Many thanks for taking care of my ptosis surgery today. I am now back home and resting but wanted to send a quick note to thank you for taking such good care of me.”
“The treatment was a great success; within 24 hours of starting the treatment the pain and swelling subsided and as a result, I was able to enjoy a great holiday in Argentina.”
“Thank you, my eye is recovering brilliantly (you almost can’t see I had it). Jane was amazing, please pass on a huge thank you.”

“What I loved most was her willingness to take my knowledge of my disease and experience into consideration. I am very impressed and feel lucky to be in her care.”
Fiona M.
“Dr. Crawley is always in such a good mood and always does her utmost to help. Best doctor I have ever seen!”
Matthew K.
“Dr. Crawley has a wonderful manner, is clearly knowledgeable and is an asset to the hospital.”
Lisa A.
“It was a pleasure to be there, the premises are excellent and the professionalism and care that was extended to me were equally excellent. I can’t fault any part of the process whatsoever and am pleased that the procedure seems to have been successful.”
Rob Swallow
“Thank you for your help during the year.”
Julia S.
“Just a quick note for saying thanks for looking after my Mum so wonderfully as she was very worried about the appointment and you really made such a big difference to the experience.”
Sven K.

“Thank you very much for seeing me yesterday, you were marvellous and a pride to the NHS.”

Mariah P.
“I was treated with great courtesy and kindness, and everything was explained to me in layman’s terms so I could fully understand my condition. I was immensely impressed.”
“Many thanks to Mr Khan. His prompt diagnosis and explanation was very reassuring indeed.”
Heather M.
“Dr Khan and Ingrid both put me at ease, talked me through the procedure, the aftercare, gave general tips/advice for maintaining a healthy/clean eye and were really friendly, whilst being professional throughout.”

“Just keep up the good work Dr. Khan. My wife, who accompanied me, and I were both very impressed by the care and consideration shown by the whole team when I had surgery. The care of this team has made it a wonderful experience for me.”
David S.
“Ever since my first consultation with you, the caring dedication and understanding I have received from you has been priceless. Thank you with all my heart. Wishing you a healthy and happy future.”
Doreen S.
“We left with a much greater understanding of the issues involved with genetic testing. It was also very helpful and reassuring to see Dr. Amar again and be introduced to Jonathan the genetic counselor.”
Rachael S.
“On behalf of my mother as well as myself, I would like to thank you for the consultation we had with you last Friday regarding my Usher Type 2/ RP condition. The knowledge and advice you shared with us was much appreciated.”
Chris B.
“Your caring attitude and honest approach to help relieve my problem and find the best solution is overwhelming. And it is with this in mind we would like to express our sincere thanks for everything you have done for me.”
Maurice K.


Recognised and trusted as a premium eye care and skin care specialist

We are accredited with the major private health and professional speciality bodies who have bestowed upon us the qualifications to carry out aesthetic and medical treatments at the highest levels of quality.

Frequently Asked Questions

Eyelid ptosis surgery is usually performed as a day case and will not require an overnight stay. For children, the operation is performed under general anaesthetic.

The oculoplastic surgeon makes a few very small incisions in the eyelid and over the brow, and then passes the suspension material through the incisions to join the eyelid with the forehead. The small incisions are closed with discrete stitches.

Under general anaesthetic no pain will be felt. After the operation they will feel a little discomfort around the eye but this usually settles within a few days.

The operation can also be done under local anaesthetic where just the forehead or eyelids are injected and are pain-free.

The oculoplastic surgeon does not usually pad the eye after a frontalis suspension as the eye stays open and the pad could scratch the eye.

At the end of the operation the oculoplastic surgeon puts a lot of antibiotic ointment on the eye to protect it. Post-operative care consist of applying antibiotic ointment to the eye and wound 3 or 4 times a day and painkillers for any pain or discomfort.

Initially the eyelids are often bruised and swollen. The bruising can take 2-3 weeks to clear and there may be some residual swelling for up to 6 weeks.

It often takes several months for the lids to settle into their new position, and only then can the effectiveness of the surgery be assessed. The scars will fade gradually, but in any case are very small and tend to be hidden within the crease of the eyelid.

One risk of a frontalis suspension is asymmetry between each side requiring further operations, sometimes a few years later.

Other, rarer complications can include:

  • Infection of the material (if this happens the surgeon makes an operation to remove the infected material)
  • Extrusion of the material (sometimes another operation is needed to remove/replace the material)
  • Difficulties in closing the eye properly. This is helped by lubricant eye drops and only very rarely is a further operation required.