While it’s certainly not as popular as double eyelid surgery, ptosis surgery in Singapore is still one of the most sought-after treatments. Also known as droopy eyelids, ptosis can happen to everyone. It occurs more frequently with the elderly, but it can also happen at any age and to varying degrees of severity.
Sometimes, children are born with congenital upper eyelid ptosis, which requires surgical correction at a young age. If ptosis occurs later in life, one may seek surgery when the condition starts to hinder daily activities. Of course, there are also individuals who choose to undergo the procedure for aesthetic reasons.
Droopy eyelids can make you appear inattentive, tired, or stern, and they can affect your vision too. When you start raising your eyebrows more often to lift your upper eyelids up, it can cause headaches and fatigue.
If you are looking for a solution to correct droopy eyelids, we’ve created a handy guide on ptosis surgery. From the types of ptosis surgery to the clinics that offer ptosis surgery, here’s all the information you’ll need to make an informed decision.
What causes droopy eyelids?
Our eyelid muscle, also known as the levator muscle, is what keeps our upper eyelid, well, up. Much like a rubber band, this elastic muscle contracts and relaxes to control how your eyelids open and close. However, this muscle can weaken and become less elastic as you age, causing ptosis.
Apart from ageing, here are the other main causes of ptosis:
- Trauma: An injury to the eye area can weaken or sever the levator muscle
- Prolonged use of contact lenses: When you pull or stretch your eyelid to insert a contact lens, it can cause the skin to loosen
- Congenital causes: Ptosis can sometimes be due to a structural malformation of the levator muscle at birth
- Medical conditions: When both the upper eyelids droop, it may be a sign of an underlying medical condition
- Serious illnesses: Ptosis may also point towards severe conditions such as cancer of the nerves or muscles
The types of ptosis surgery available
1. Suture Ptosis Eyelid Correction
This ptosis surgery technique is done by stitching your eyelid tissue to adjust your eyelid muscle without making an incision. It is recommended for those with mild ptosis and asymmetrical eyes.
2. Incisional Ptosis Eyelid Correction
An incision will be made to access the eyelid muscle to create a crease. Along with part of the eyelid muscle, any unnecessary tissues such as fat and skin can be removed with this technique. This is recommended for those with mild to severe forms of ptosis.
3. Frontalis Suspension Technique
If the eyelid muscles are too weak, sutures can be used to hold the eyelid tissues up to the eyebrows. This helps the muscle to support the eyelid. This technique is usually recommended to treat severe cases of congenital (present from birth) ptosis.
What is the procedure for ptosis surgery like?
First, your doctor will make specific measurements and markings on your upper eyelids to discern the outcome of your ptosis surgery. Some clinics conduct simulations to ensure that they’re symmetrical too. When you’re ready to go, local anaesthesia will be administered around the eye area to prep you for ptosis surgery. It will also be used throughout the procedure.
If you have a very low pain threshold, sedation is also an option. However, you will be woken up after the surgery to complete the eyelid height assessment.
Moderate to severe ptosis will require a surgical procedure, where an incision will be made along the upper eyelid crease. This exposes the eyelid tissues and muscles for adjustment. The muscle tendon at the opening of the eyelid is shortened or tightened, and the eyelid tissue will be positioned upwards to achieve a lifting effect.
After which, your doctor will ask you to sit up to assess the amount of eyelid opening and check for symmetry. Minimal adjustments may be performed if required. Lastly, the wound will be sutured either to blend with your existing eyelid crease or form a double eyelid crease, if you have requested for it.
Is there any downtime and aftercare required?
You may experience minor swelling and bruising around the eyes after ptosis surgery, which will diminish in a few days. It takes about one to three months for your upper eyelids to heal completely.
During the first week, you’ll want to ice the skin around your eye area. You will also need to clean the eye area four to six times until the stitches are removed. This also depends on your doctor’s instructions. After a week, your stitches will be removed. However, you still have to rest, which is why most patients take up to 10 days off from work and postpone important or rigorous activities.
When the third week rolls around, you can start exercising. You may still experience some minor swelling until your skin heals completely by the third month. In most cases, the results of ptosis surgery are permanent, although you can make tiny revisions in the future.
To ensure a swift recovery process, here’s what you’ll need to do:
- Do not rub your eye area too hard: Treat your eye area with tender, loving care after the surgery and avoid any unnecessary pressure on it.
- Do not go swimming until your stitches are removed: This reduces the chance of infection.
- Use a sunscreen or dark-tinted sunglasses: You’ll need to protect your eyes from the sun, wind, and other environmental elements.
- Apply cool compresses: This method helps to bring down the swelling and can temporarily relieve pain.
- Try to avoid taking medication such as ibuprofen, naproxen, and herbal medicine: These medicine may increase bleeding risk.
- Avoid smoking: Smoking stresses your heart and reduces your body’s ability to recover.
Are there any risks involved when it comes to ptosis surgery?
As with any other surgery, there’s a chance that ptosis surgery can fail. If a doctor misdiagnoses your situation or uses faulty surgical techniques, it can result in a botched ptosis surgery. When this happens, you may experience abnormal scarring, bleeding, infections, and broken sutures.
This is why looking for a good surgeon is the most important part of your entire research for ptosis surgery. Here are some tips to finding a surgeon for ptosis surgery in Singapore:
- Find out if your surgeon has done many ptosis surgeries. A doctor who has conducted many similar surgeries is more likely to have more experience in dealing with a variety of cases
- If you know of people who have done ptosis surgery, ask for their thoughts about their doctors and whether they would recommend them
- Spend time in the initial consultation with your shortlisted doctor and ask any question you have about the surgery. The doctor you should eventually choose should be someone who takes your questions seriously and be able to explain to you adequately and make sure you understand them
- In the initial consultation, get a sense of the clinic staff’s service level towards patients. The support staff will be doing reminders and briefings for you, so you’ll want to make sure that they are service-oriented and thorough.
Not sure how to start researching for doctors? To kick off your research process, our next segment will be useful to you.
Where should I go for ptosis surgery in Singapore?
1. Allure Plastic Surgery
Located at Wisma Atria’s penthouse floor, Allure Plastic Surgery is a day surgery centre that focuses on post-pregnancy makeovers, breast surgeries, as well as intricate eye and nose surgeries. The clinic is led by Consultant Plastic Surgeon Dr Samuel Ho, who has worked in notable plastic surgery centres in Korea.
Dr Ho is adept at performing intricate surgeries, which is a must when it comes to ptosis surgery. He will first conduct a detailed consultation to evaluate your eyes and facial anatomy before discussing the changes you desire.
When you’re ready, the ptosis surgery will begin. Dr Ho uses a modified “under through” levator application technique to correct droopy eyelids and further define the upper eyelid crease. This creates larger-looking eyes and makes you appear more awake. The surgery centre promises a recovery period of about two to four weeks too, depending on your age.
Allure Plastic Surgery’s Ptosis Correction is priced from S$4800, excluding day surgery and anaesthesia. In Singapore, ptosis surgery is classified as a medical condition by the Ministry of Health. Thus, it can be claimed through MediSave and insurance. However, this depends on the severity of your ptosis.
Contact Allure Plastic Surgery to enquire about rates and book a consultation.
Address: 435 Orchard Road, #22-04 Wisma Atria, Singapore 238877
Opening hours: 10am – 6pm (Mon to Thu) | 10am – 8pm (Fri) | 10am – 3pm (Sat)| Closed on Sun & PH
Contact: Call 6734 9988, WhatsApp 9623 7836, or email [email protected]
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2. Woffles Wu Aesthetic Surgery & Laser Centre
While its known for its plastic surgery services, Woffles Wu Aesthetic Surgery & Laser Centre also offers a range of aesthetic surgery for the eyes. This includes ptosis surgery, eyebag removal, browlifting, and double eyelid surgery. Dr Woffles Wu provides surgical and non-surgical solutions for the eye area so you can choose them according to your preference.
Contact Woffles Wu Aesthetic Surgery & Laser Centre to enquire about rates.
Address: 1 Orchard Boulevard, Suite #09-02 Camden Medical Centre, Singapore 249615
Opening hours: Please contact the clinic for operating hours
Contact: Call 6733 9771 or email [email protected]
3. Shens Clinic
A surgeon who trained in Korea, Dr Shens of Shens Clinic has over two decades of experience in the field of plastic surgery. He has performed countless surgical procedures, and many of the surgeries he has conducted include intricate ones such as ptosis surgery.
Dr Shens believes in lifting droopy eyelids with a painless surgery, providing local anaesthesia or sedation for a swift, comfortable procedure. When it comes to ptosis correction, he does not use absorbable sutures as they tend to cause more inflammation and possibly more scarring on the thin, delicate skin around your eyes. This is why you are required to return after a week to have your stitches safely removed.
Contact Shens Clinic to enquire about rates.
Address: 3 Killiney Road, #09-08 Winsland House 1, Singapore 239519
Opening hours: 9.30am – 6.30pm (Mon to Fri) | 9.30am – 2.30pm (Sat)| Closed on Sun & PH
Contact: Call 6904 4488, WhatsApp 9641 6744, or email [email protected]
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