Long Term Contact Lens Use and Mild Ptosis?

I'm a long term contact lens wearer (if you would consider 5-6 years long term) and have noticed some drooping in my left eye this last couple weeks. How long this has actually been happening, I'm not sure. I don't necessarily think it is a bad enough imbalance to seek surgery, but I'd just like to ask: - Can mild ptosis from lens wear be reversed with exercise or by eliminating the use of lenses? - What even is the likelihood of developing ptosis from contact lenses? 50%? 5%?

Doctor Answers 2

Eyelid ptosis (droopy) from contact lens wear

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Prolonged contact lens wear, especially hard contact lens, can cause eyelid ptosis (droopy). That's because there is constant pressure on the muscle/tendon responsible for lifting the eyelid and prolonged pressure causes the tendon to get looser.  Stopping contact lens wear does not reverse it; it only stops it from getting worse. However, there also other causes of ptosis that may at play here. See an oculoplastic specialist or ophthalmologist.

Beverly Hills Oculoplastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 91 reviews

Impossible to accurately answer these specific questions for you.

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Generally it is thought that manipulating the eyelids can contribute to eyelid laxity and yes, ptosis.  Contact lens wear over time can also be associated with ptosis but really this is not that common.  Would stopping contact lens wear reverse your upper eyelid ptosis?  Not necessarily because it is impossible to know if the two are actually related.  Consult your general ophthalmologist.  I generally recommend wearing the contact lens and when it becomes necessary fixing the ptosis.

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