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Ptosis Surgery in Singapore: Dr Samuel Ho’s Guide for 2022

Ptosis surgery in Singapore is a procedure meant to correct droopy eyelids by lifting the eyelid and removing the excess skin affecting the patient’s vision. Sometimes, people undergo ptosis surgery for aesthetic reasons, such as to fix asymmetry in the eyelids or to look more awake. 

Ptosis is often caused by the effects of ageing such as increased skin laxity and the weakening of the levator palpebrae superioris muscle tendon, which is responsible for lifting the eyelid. However, younger people may have it too! In fact, more than a third of Dr Samuel Ho’s ptosis patients are patients in their early 20’s to 40’s. In these cases, the droopy eyelids may have been caused by trauma, disease or the continuous stretching of the eyelids. Ptosis may also be a result of anatomical defects at birth (congenital ptosis). 

What can ptosis correction surgery treat?

As mentioned earlier, ptosis correction surgery can treat the drooping of the eyelid(s) caused by excessive eyelid skin, weakened eye muscles or disease. In severe cases, ptosis compromises vision, significantly affecting your ability to see. Ptosis correction surgery treats droopy eyelids, hence, improving vision and overall quality of life. 

Eye Surgery

What is droopy eyelid surgery in Singapore like? 

What to expect for your droopy eyelid surgery will be dependent on its severity and causes. 

It always starts with a comprehensive consultation with your surgeon in order to accurately map out and discern what surgical techniques to employ based on the severity of your condition, its causes and your facial features. Dr Samuel Ho will measure your Marginal Reflex Distance (MRD), which is the distance of your pupil’s centre to the upper eyelid to determine whether ptosis correction would be necessary. 

There are a huge variety of surgical methods to treat droopy eyelids. Cases of mild ptosis (where the eyelid only covers a small portion of the iris) may only require a scarless suture technique, whereas more severe cases (where more than 2mm of the iris is covered by the eyelid) may require incisional surgery. 

Severity of Ptosis

One of the most common methods would be the manipulation of the levator aponeurosis — the fascial tissue that connects the levator muscle to the connective tissue in the upper eyelid. Excess eyelid skin and fat can also be removed. 

You will be put under local anaesthesia and IV sedation to keep you comfortable throughout the procedure which lasts for about 30 - 60 minutes per eyelid. After which, you will be allowed to go home to rest and recover.

Downtime is dependent on what type of blepharoplasty technique was done. You may experience some bruising, which will subside in about 7 - 10 days. Swelling may take 2 weeks to a few months to resolve. Your surgeon may also prescribe certain medications to help reduce these side effects. 

Is ptosis correction surgery the same as double eyelid surgery?

No, they are not the same. Ptosis correction involves the repair of the levator muscle and/or removal of the excess eyelid skin to lift the eyelid, whereas double eyelid surgery is the creation of an eyelid crease to create a larger, almond-shaped eye. 

However, these procedures are similar and it is possible to achieve a double eyelid during ptosis correction surgery by making an incision and removing the excess eyelid while creating a double eyelid fold or crease.  

Who is suitable for droopy eyelid surgery in Singapore?

Droopy eyelid surgery is recommended for patients where one or more of their eyelids droops significantly, affecting their ability to keep their eyes open. This drooping often obstructs vision, causing eye strain and fatigue. The correction surgery is also suitable for less severe, more aesthetic-related cases. 

A child may be anatomically predisposed to having droopy eyelids and should undergo ptosis correction surgery if it interferes with your child’s visual development. However, if it does not affect their vision, Dr Samuel Ho suggests that you wait until the child is at least 12 years old before undergoing ptosis correction when your child is mature enough to cooperate with your surgeon to make more accurate intra-operative measurements.

How much does ptosis surgery cost in Singapore?

In Singapore, ptosis surgery can cost anywhere between $7,000 to $18,000. This is dependent on the surgeon’s expertise, anaesthetic fees, facility fees and the medication prescribed.

At Allure Plastic Surgery, surgeon fees cost about $6,900 onwards. The cost of the operating theatre, anaesthesia and medical consumables apply. Please contact us for a quotation. 

Is ptosis surgery claimable by Medisave or insurance?

Yes, if severity meets the benchmark. Moderate to severe ptosis is considered a medical condition, which may make the surgery eligible for Medisave or insurance claims. 

In order to get Medisave or insurance coverage for your ptosis surgery, you will require an official visual assessment by an opthalmologist according to guidelines stipulated by the Ministry of Health (MOH) Singapore.

Are there any risks to ptosis surgery?

Although rare, some risks related to ptosis surgery are:

  • Post-surgical swelling or bruising
  • Infection
  • Dry eyes
  • Asymmetry in eyelid height
  • Overcorrection or under-correction
  • Visual changes

Some of these are rare cases and can be avoided with a skilled surgeon and by properly following post-surgical care instructions. Swelling and bruising subside after 7 - 10 days. You may find it difficult to completely close your eyes right after surgery, but lubricant eye drops or ointment can be prescribed to help. The eyes should close completely once the swelling subsides.

What happens if I do not fix my droopy eyelids?

If left untreated, most cases of droopy eyelids worsen over time. This can greatly impair the patient’s vision. Additionally, the forehead is often used to compensate for the drooping and used to lift the eyelid margin, which, in turn, causes forehead wrinkles. Other symptoms include feelings of heaviness and fatigue, headaches and eye irritation.

In children, severe ptosis may affect vision development and cause amblyopia, more commonly known as lazy eye. 

How do I choose a clinic for ptosis surgery in Singapore? 

When it comes to choosing the right clinic for your ptosis surgery, there are a few things to take note of:

Board Certification

Board certification can be likened to a mark of distinction. Getting a board-certified surgeon ensures that the doctor has trained extensively in their area of expertise, have mastered great technical skill for complex cases, are at the top of their profession and will be able to deliver high-quality care. In Singapore, ptosis surgery can be performed by plastic surgeons, oculoplastic and facial plastic surgeons. 

Surgeon’s expertise and skills

Similar to the above, it is important to find a surgeon with expertise in ptosis surgery and has the skills needed to treat your condition safely and successfully. Eyelid surgery is one of Dr Samuel Ho’s specialities. To date, he has performed over 600 ptosis correction surgeries of varying complexities. 

He has worked alongside top plastic surgeons at plastic surgery centres around Korea. His passion had led him to discover new surgical techniques, such as the use of the “under through” levator aponeurosis plication technique for ptosis surgery. This technique, compared to the conventional levator plication method, increases the surgery’s success rate and significantly reduces the chances of ptosis relapse. 

Clinic’s facilities and technology

Clinic facilities and technology play a huge role in ensuring a comfortable surgical experience and also lowering your risk of complications from infections. The latest technology also improves patient safety and reduces the chances of medical errors. 

Allure has its own day surgery centre, fully equipped with the technology and amenities needed for your procedure. This means less hassle and enhanced patient comfort. Furthermore, Dr Ho will be at the surgery centre to make sure all goes well, even when you wake up after the procedure. 

Proper assessment and follow up

A good healthcare experience not only involves a smooth operation but also a proper assessment and follow up. Your surgeon should carry out a comprehensive pre-op assessment, as well as a follow up to make sure you are recovering well and without complications. Having your surgical expectations managed and having the right post-surgery care is as important as the surgery. 

Allure Plastic Surgery provides a health concierge service for both international and Singapore-based patients to ensure a smooth and comfortable experience. For international patients, arrangements can be made for Dr Ho to liaise with your overseas physician to ensure that you get the necessary care and attention. 

Why choose Allure Plastic Surgery?

Allure Plastic Surgery

Allure Plastic Surgery is led by Consultant Plastic Surgeon, Dr Samuel Ho, who specialises in mummy makeovers and eyelid surgery, among others. Thus far, he has performed over 600 ptosis correction surgeries of varying complexities. 

If you’re still in doubt, please reach out to any of our friendly staff. You are encouraged to address any concerns or queries so that you can make a confident decision about undergoing ptosis surgery.