Eyelid Surgery

Plastic Reconstructive Surgery of the Eyelids

Ophthalmic plastic and reconstructive surgery is a subspecialty within the ophthalmology field that seeks to address the structures that immediately surround the eyes, including the eyelids, tear drainage apparatus, and orbit (eye socket).

Our oculoplastic surgeon, Dr. Beckstead, specializes in surgical correction of droopy eyelids, tear drainage abnormalities, periocular trauma, and has extensive experience in the surgical treatment of periocular cancers.

The most common conditions treated by an oculoplastic surgeon include droopy upper and lower eyelids, eyelid cancers, tear drainage abnormalities, trauma around the eyes, and medical diseases or growths manifest in the orbit. Other areas of interest to an oculoplastic surgeon include periocular
rejuvenation, which consists of newer medicines (Botox), synthetic materials (dermal fillers), and surgery to address aging changes.

Ptosis (drooping upper eyelid)

Ptosis of the eyelids is a process in which the eyelids droop below the ideal position for best peripheral vision. Ptosis of the eyelids can be brought about by a Variety of causes Including developmental abnormality, aging, trauma and other medical conditions.

Ptosis Diagram

Risk Factors

Risk factors include aging, previous contact lens wear, and frequent eye rubbing. Several patients, anecdotally, Report that ptosis runs in their family.


Many individuals do not have noticeable or alarming symptoms, unless Drooping of the eyelid occurs rapidly as would occur in some concerning medical conditions. Others notice an improvement in visual quality by raising their eyelids with the muscles of their forehead or with their fingers.


To improve the position of the eyelids a thorough examination needs to be performed in order to find the underlying cause of ptosis. After the underlying cause is determined, A treatment plan can be recommended. This plan may include conservative management or possible surgery to help improve vision.

Lower Eyelid Malpositions (ectropion/entropion)

The most common malpositions of the lower eyelid include ectropion (outward rotation) and entropion (inward rotation).

ectropion/entropion Diagram

Risk Factors

Abnormal positioning of the lower eyelids most commonly occurs due to the aging process. With aging comes increased laxity of the eyelid which allows it to turn away from the eye, or inward causing the lashes to be directed towards the eye. Other risk factors include stroke, trauma, post-operative scarring, or other types scarring changes to the skin or mucous membranes of the eyelids.


Depending on the position of the eyelids one could experience a variety of symptoms. In the case of entropion, the eyelashes are turned towards the eye which causes a dramatic foreign body sensation. With ectropion the eye may feel dry and scratchy and produce excess tears and mucus. With either abnormal position the eye can become red. 


Conservative management includes lubrication of the eye with artificial tears or ointments which improve comfort. if the eyelid is rolled inwards, tape can be used to pull the eyelid away from the eye. Definitive treatment includes surgical tightening and re-positioning of the eyelid.

Epiphora (tearing)

Epiphora as a condition of chronic and frequent tearing. In many cases, this condition can be visually debilitating.

Risk Factors

There are several conditions and causes for epiphora. Increasing age, female sex, previous trauma, and allergies all Are known risk factors. Other independent variables can cause epiphora to be more significant. These include dry eyes, seasonal allergies, local irritants to the eye, certain topical and systemic medications.


Those who suffer with With chronic epiphora notice blurring of the vision, overflow of tears that runoff the cheek, and a constant need to carry around something to dry their tears like a tissue. Some patients notice tearing worsening when they are in dry or windy conditions, even air conditioning can worsen symptoms.


There are several methods of treatment. Conservative management includes addressing any underlying stimulus for tearing including dry eye, localized allergies, or other ocular irritants that may be present. If these measures aren’t completely effective in controlling symptoms further testing can be done to help find the best treatment option for the tearing. This sometimes includes surgical interventions, which are very effective at Improving symptoms and
quality of life.

Eyelid Neoplasms

There are several types of eyelid neoplasms, or growths of the skin of the eyelid. These neoplasms range in severity from benign to cancerous lesions.
Concerning neoplasms of the eyelids should be evaluated early to avoid progression of potential harmful lesions. 

Eyelid Neoplasms Image

Risk Factors

Risk factors for cancerous lesions of the eyelid include increasing age, sun exposure, previous cancers of the skin elsewhere on the body, and family history of skin cancer.


Initially, there are very few symptoms to new growths of the skin of the eyelids. Sometimes bumps can be painful and are caused by underlying localized inflammation. Other neoplasms are painless and can be either benign or cancerous. Concerning signs of cancer include ulceration or spontaneous bleeding, hair or eyelash loss around the lesion, abnormal coloration, and fine blood vessels that are integrated in the lesion.


The treatment for eyelid neoplasms depends on the features of the lesion. Smaller lesions without concerning features may be observed by your doctor with
scheduled follow up visits to ensure stability of the growth. Inflammatory growths of the eyelid can be treated successfully with prescribed medications. Other lesions that are bothersome or have concerning features may require biopsy or excision for definitive treatment.

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Idaho Falls Office

2100 Providence Way
Idaho Falls
Idaho 83404


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1777 E Clark St
#310 Pocatello
Idaho 83201


Rexburg Office

23 Sawtelle Ave.
St #102 Rexburg
ID 83440

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