How can I fix my eyelids? They don't match. (Photo)

About 4 years ago I had a severe case of pink eye. My eye was swollen for several days. Since then it has never been the same and I hate how it looks in photos. Is surgery the only answer or can I do something else to get it back to normal ??

Doctor Answers 6

Eyelids don't match

It appears that the left upper eyelid levator muscle has either stretched or separated from the attachment on the tarsal plate of the eyelid, which then makes the left eyelid droop and the eyelid crease very high. This of course, then does not match the right eye. If you look at the photo, it also shows that the eyebrow is higher on the left side. This is your brain trying to fix the problem by pulling with other muscles to open the left eye. This procedure involves an incision in the left upper eyelid to fix the muscle and help make the eyelid creases symmetrical. I sugest getting a consultation with a surgeon who specializes in this procdure such as an occuloplastic surgeon or a plastic surgeon that does this procedure.

Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.4 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Pink eye (conjunctivitis) doesn't normally cause hollowing, but there are options to correct your hollow eye

I’m a board certified cosmetic oculofacial plastic surgeon practicing in Manhattan and Long Island for over 20 years. I specialize in cosmetic and reconstructive surgery in the eyelid area and I deal a lot with revision surgery for complex reconstructions as well as complications of infections and cosmetic surgery.

Pink eye is a condition called conjunctivitis. This is an infection where the eyes are always wet and tearing, but it eventually gets better. However, conjunctivitis does not change the space around your eye. In your photo, I can see that the left eye has a very high crease. High creases are a result of loss of volume in the orbit or eye socket, specifically there is loss of orbital fat or fat that’s normally around the eyes. This also happens in patients who have infection such as preseptal cellulitis or orbital cellulitis.

To address this hollow area, there are both surgical and non-surgical options. Prior to the use of fillers, my approach for patients with high creases due to cosmetic surgery is fat grafting. I would harvest fat from an area of the body and place it into the hollow space in different levels. This way, the fat would heal and the body would readily take it. This process involves taking cells or tissue out of one area, taking them away from the blood supply, putting them in another area, then hoping the blood supply will take. One of the challenges is if the fat doesn’t take, which is why grafting often requires multiple procedures. There are other methods such as dermis fat grafting, which is a different approach that involves an incision on the eyelid, and the placement of a combination of skin and fat placed into that space. Again, it is surgical graft, therefore there is some unpredictability.

In some patients who have a hollow appearance, we can also use fillers such as Restylane and Juvederm. This is a conservative way to fill part of that orbital space. It’s generally not advised to place it in the high area inside the orbit. It doesn’t seem to follow any type of predictable result, but we can actually get a nice cosmetic result with just the filler alone. We’ve also combined the filler with platelet-rich plasma (PRP) to have a synergistic effect that would stimulate tissue growth and healing.

It’s important that you meet with doctors and get some opinions. I would recommend oculoplastic or oculofacial plastic surgeons. The eyes are a very specialized area and you would be best served with someone who does this as a significant part of what they do in their practice. In addition, get some opinions of what would be best for you. It’s very important that you communicate and work with the doctor you’re comfortable with in terms of the risks and benefits. There’s obviously no perfect solution for this. I hope that was helpful, I wish you the best of luck, and thank you for your question.

This personalized video answer to your question is posted on RealSelf and on YouTube. To provide you with a personal and expert response, we use the image(s) you submitted on RealSelf in the video, but with respect to your privacy, we only show the body feature in question so you are not personally identifiable. If you prefer not to have your video question visible on YouTube, please contact us.

Amiya Prasad, MD
New York Oculoplastic Surgeon
4.3 out of 5 stars 70 reviews


Your left upper eyelid has been stretched and now droops. In order to see better you unintentionally use your eyebrow to help assist in the elevation of the lid. There are a few techniques used to correct this problem. An oculoplastic surgeon can evaluate your condition in the office and guide you with the appropriate treatment. 

James R. Gordon, MD, FACS, FAAO
New York Oculoplastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 140 reviews

Left eyelid ptosis

You have left upper lid ptosis and the only way to correct it would be surgery. This is done under local anesthesia and recovery would be 10 days. Please see you local plastic surgeon or  oculoplastic surgeons.

Kamran Khoobehi, MD
New Orleans Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 122 reviews

You will need surgery for this.

You have a left upper eyelid levator dehiscence ptosis.  This can be repaired with ptosis surgery.  You also need to have a hard upper eyelid crease made so that the left upper eyelid looks much more like the right side.  I recommend seeing several fellowship trained oculoplastic surgeons.  The American Society for Ophthalmic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery maintains a regional directory on their website that can help you find a well qualified surgeon close to home.

Kenneth D. Steinsapir, MD
Beverly Hills Oculoplastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 26 reviews

Ptosis repair

it appears that you have a levator dehiscense . That means the muscle that raises your eyelid has slipped off the upper lid abit. The only way to fix this is with a ptosis repair which is a levator advancement to get the lid to its normal height

Geoffrey Kwitko, MD, FACS
Tampa Oculoplastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 6 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.