Ptosis is the term used for a drooping upper eyelid. Ptosis, also called blepharoptosis, can affect one or both eyes.

The eyelids serve to protect and lubricate the outer eye. The upper eyelid is lifted by a muscle called the levator muscle. Inside the back part of the lid is a tarsal plate which adds rigidity to the lid. The levator muscle is attached to the tarsal plate by a flat tendon called the levator aponeurosis. When the muscle cannot lift the eyelid or lifts it only partially, the person is said to have a ptosis.

There are two types of ptosis, acquired and congenital. Acquired ptosis is more common. Congenital ptosis is present at birth. Both congenital and acquired ptosis can be, but are not necessarily, hereditary.


  1. Drooping of one or both eyelids
  2. Increased tearing
  3. If ptosis is severe, interference with vision.