Canthoplasty and canthopexy means the tightening of the ligament and/or muscle that support the outer corner of the eyelid. A canthoplasty reshapes the eye, while a canthopexy supports without changing the eye shape. This procedure can be used to prevent or correct pulling down of the lower lid. Canthoplasty can also be used to create the much sought after cat eye look with an upwardly slanted outer eyelid corner. It has many different names including: Canthoplasty, tarsal strip re-suspension, lateral retinacular suspension and inferior retinacular suspension.
Who is a good candidate?
Anyone with sagging lower eyelids may be a candidate. The eyelids can be droopy or too low because of prior eyelid surgery, aging or paralysis. Usually it is performed in addition to an Eyelid Lift, Face Lift and Brow Lift, though many patients have it on its own.
What does the surgery involve & how long does the surgery take?
There are many variations in the surgical technique, which allows for the level of reinforcement to range from patient to patient, each patient is different and so therefore there are varying ways of performing this procedure. However in canthopexy the lower canthal tendon is tightened with a permanent internal suture. In canthoplasty the tendon is divided, moved and tightened. It is usually performed through a small incision in the outer corner of the eyelids; it can be done under local anesthesia, with sedation or under general anaesthetic.
What can I expect from canthoplasty/canthopexy?
Your expectations need to be realistic. You will have a new tightening and elevation of the lower lids, and improved youthfulness of the lower eyelids and eyes. The overall achievement will be having a completely natural look that compliments the rest of your features.
Recovery after the Procedure
What will happen in the recovery period?
You may have slight swelling and bruising which is only natural. However you should be up and about without any problems. The bruising and swelling will subside in a few days to a week, and there shouldn’t be much pain with this procedure, though your eyes may feel a little dry so therefore a little uncomfortable. You will have follow-up visits in the months after surgery to check on your progress.
What is the recovery time from the surgery?
This procedure involves a very small area and usually causes very little pain or other symptoms. Local swelling and bruising is usually present for a few days to a week. In most cases, you need only 1-2 days off from work; however this will depend on the individual patient.