Upper Eyelid Surgery for Hooded Eyes

There is any number of well-known quotes extolling the virtues of the eyes. These quotes range from the ancient Greek quote reminding us that “beauty is in the eyes of the beholder,” to the Shakespearean quote that “the eyes are the window to the soul.” No matter how you look at it, the eyes have been a powerful literary metaphor for thousands of years.

Part of the reason for humankind’s ongoing fascination with the eyes is that they are the main focal point of the facial features. Even if we are not consciously aware of doing so, we will focus our gaze toward the other person’s eyes when we are speaking with them. The eyes often provide us with nonverbal cues that tell us how to respond to what they are saying.

Our staff at Jefferson Plastic Surgery believes that the importance of the eyes in terms of communication may be one of the more important factors motivating prospective patients to undergo upper eyelid surgery to correct for hooded eyelids, sometimes known as ptosis. What causes hooded eyelids, and how can upper eyelid surgery correct this problem?

What Causes Hooded Eyelids?

In most cases, people develop hooded eyelids as a result of collagen loss, resulting in excess loose skin in the upper eyelids. This will give a droopy, set-back appearance to the eyes and may actually partially obscure the vision in extreme cases. Collagen is a protein that the body forms in order to fill out the skin over the skeletal framework. As the body ages, it will lose collagen, including around the upper eyelids.

Specific medical conditions that may cause hooded eyelids can include congenital deformities, loosened muscles around the upper eyelid following eye surgery, or a stroke that may affect the eyelid muscles. Those with a hypo-active (underactive) thyroid may also develop hooded eyelids. If you require upper eyelid surgery as a result of a medical condition, your insurance may cover the cost of the procedure.

Surgical Treatment for Hooded Upper Eyelids

Your surgeon will start by making a small incision in the natural crease at the top of the upper eyelid that will easily be hidden. The surgeon will then gently peel back any excess skin, remove it, and then suture the remainder back into place. If you also have puffy eyelids, as a result of excess fat deposits, your surgeon can also remove the fat as well. However, if you have a gaunt, hollowed out appearance to your upper eyelids, your surgeon will likely not remove any fat deposits, as that may exacerbate the problem.

You can expect that there will be some bruising and swelling for the first 10 to 14 days following surgery. Cold compresses and ice will help reduce the amount and duration of both. Final results will usually be apparent around four weeks after surgery.

Throughout history, poets, writers, and musicians have used the eyes as imagery and inspiration for their art. This underscores the importance of the eyes in terms of interacting and communication. If you are not happy with the message that your hooded eyelids may be communicating, upper eyelid surgery may be the answer you are seeking.

Questions? Email us today.

To make or reschedule an appointment please complete the form below or call:  (215) 625-6630.

CALL US TODAY: (215)625-6630


Jefferson Plastic Surgery is located on the corner of 9th and Walnut streets in Center City, Philadelphia on the 15th floor of the Wills Eye Hospital Building.

Jefferson Plastic Surgery
840 Walnut Street - 15th Floor
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19107
Phone: (215) 625-6630
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Out of town patients can take our simple 4 step online consultation. To make or reschedule an appointment please call:  (215) 625-6630.

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