Ptosis

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We understand it’s a challenge for parents when a child has ptosis, or droopy eyelids. It can be confusing to manage their condition without knowing where to start. At CHOC, our ophthalmology team is dedicated to understanding a child’s needs and offering specialty care to protect and restore vision, all in a pediatric setting.

father and daughter seeing through hands like binoculars

What is ptosis?

Ptosis, commonly referred to as “droopy eyelids,” is when the upper eyelids droops over the eye. In severe cases, the drooping eyelid can block vision.

What are the causes?

Droopy eyelids can result when the main muscle that opens the eyelid (levator palpebrae superioris) or another muscle (superior tarsal) do not contract correctly. Other causes can include:

  • Structural problems with the muscle that are present from birth
  • Muscle disorders
  • Nerve problems

How is ptosis diagnosed?

The ophthalmology team at CHOC can perform a full eye exam to look for any eye abnormalities.

What are the treatment options for ptosis?

CHOC’s ophthalmology team may choose to routinely check your child for vision problems. In some cases, ptosis gets better over time as the facial structure develops. In severe cases, surgery may be advised if the eyelid is severely blocking vision.