Double Eyelid Surgery or Ptosis Surgery: What's the Difference?

Double eyelid surgery and ptosis surgery are two common procedures in the realm of cosmetic and reconstructive eye surgeries. While they both involve the eyelids, their purposes and techniques differ significantly. Understanding the differences between these procedures is crucial for individuals considering eye surgeries to achieve their desired aesthetic or functional outcomes.


Double eyelid surgery

Double eyelid surgery, also known as blepharoplasty eyelid surgery, is a cosmetic procedure aimed at creating a crease in the upper eyelid. This crease is commonly seen in individuals of non-Asian descent but is less prominent or absent in many Asian individuals. The surgery’s primary goal is to enhance the appearance of the eyes by creating a natural-looking eyelid fold, often considered desirable in many cultures.


Procedure overview

  • Consultation: The process typically begins with a consultation with an oculoplastic surgeon or eyelid plastic surgeon. During this consultation, the surgeon evaluates the patient’s eyelid features, determines the desired goals, and discusses the surgical options.
  • Anaesthesia: Double eyelid surgery is usually performed under local anaesthesia. General anaesthesia is possible but this takes away the opportunity to assess the result during surgery.
  • Incision and crease creation: The surgeon makes incisions along the eyelid where the crease will be created. The incision technique can vary, including full-incision and small-incision methods. Non-incisional or suture methods may be considered as well for those with less heavy eyelid tissue.
  • Tissue adjustment and closure: In incisional methods, excess skin, fat, and muscle tissues may be removed to achieve the desired eyelid appearance as well as allow for some lash rotation outwards in those with down-pointing lashes. The incisions are then carefully closed with sutures.


Recovery and results

After double eyelid surgery, patients can expect some swelling and bruising, which typically subsides within a few weeks. It usually takes one to two months for the final results to fully manifest as the eyelids settle into their new shape. The outcome of double eyelid surgery is often a more defined eyelid crease that enhances the eye appearance, making the eyes appear larger and more expressive.


Ptosis surgery

Ptosis surgery, on the other hand, addresses drooping, also known as ptosis, of the upper eyelid. Ptosis can occur due to various reasons, including age-related wear-and-tear, muscle weakness, nerve damage, or congenital factors. Unlike double eyelid surgery, which focuses on creating a crease, ptosis surgery aims to lift the eyelid to improve superior visual field and restore a more youthful and alert appearance.


Procedure overview

  • Evaluation: Similar to double eyelid surgery, ptosis surgery begins with a comprehensive evaluation by an oculoplastic surgeon. The evaluation assesses the degree of eyelid drooping, the underlying cause, and the patient’s visual needs. It is important to rule out neurological causes that may not be correctable with surgery.
  • Anaesthesia: Ptosis surgery is typically performed under local anaesthesia with sedation, allowing the patient to remain comfortable during the procedure while being responsive to the surgeon’s instructions.
  • Muscle repair or tightening: The surgical approach for ptosis involves repairing or tightening the levator muscle responsible for lifting the eyelid. In some cases, additional tissues may be removed or adjusted to achieve optimal eyelid height, contour and symmetry.
  • Closure and recovery: After the necessary adjustments are made, the incisions are closed with sutures. Patients can expect some swelling and temporary discomfort, but these symptoms gradually improve as the eyelid heals.


Recovery and results

The recovery period for ptosis surgery is similar to that of double eyelid surgery, with swelling and bruising subsiding over time. Patients experience improved superior visual field and a more open appearance of the eyes following ptosis correction. The final results, including the eyelid margin and crease position, become more apparent as the tissues heal and settle into place.


Key differences

1. Purpose

Double eyelid surgery aims to create an eyelid crease purely for cosmetic enhancement whilst ptosis surgery focuses on lifting a drooping eyelid to improve visual field even as it gives a nice cosmetic side benefit.

2. Techniques

The surgical techniques for double eyelid surgery involve creating a new crease, while ptosis surgery involves repairing or tightening the eyelid lifting muscles.

3. Candidates

Candidates for double eyelid surgery typically seek purely aesthetic improvements, whereas ptosis surgery candidates often have functional concerns related to eyelid drooping and vision obstruction.



At Ava Eye Clinic, we offer comprehensive services for individuals seeking both cosmetic and functional enhancements for their eyelids. In addition to general eye care and cataract surgery, we specialise in double eyelid surgery, ptosis correction and a range of other eyelid or oculoplastic procedures.

Whether you’re interested in creating a natural-looking eyelid crease or addressing eyelid drooping that affects your vision, our clinic provides personalised consultations and advanced surgical techniques to help you achieve your desired outcomes safely and effectively.

To learn more about our services or schedule a consultation, contact us today!