Study Shows Wearing Contact Lenses Increases Risk of Drooping Upper Eyelids

Acquired Ptosis Not Linked to Work Stress, Sleep, Sun Exposure or Body Mass Index

New York, NY (June 25, 2015) – A recent study published in the  Aesthetic Surgery Journal, the official publication of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS), showed both hard and soft contact lenses contributed to the drooping of the upper eyelids, a medical condition referred to as ptosis. The severity of the drooping eyelids was more evident in twins who wore hard contact lenses (1.84 mm – mean ptosis measurement) compared to those who wore soft lenses (1.41 mm – mean ptosis measurement). Twins who did not wear contact lenses had a mean ptosis measurement of 1.00 mm.

“The difference between one millimeter and two may not seem like much, but when it comes to eyelids, it is significant. Plastic surgeons who specialize in surgery of the lower and upper eyelids attest that even a ½ millimeter can make a world of difference when it comes to vision and overall appearance,” explained lead senior, Dr. Bahman Guyuron, board-certified plastic surgeon based in Cleveland, Ohio.

The study was conducted on 96 sets of identical twins that had differing severity of drooping eyelids. Researchers also looked for links between drooping eyelids and body mass index (BMI), smoking, sun exposure, alcohol consumption, work-related stress, and sleep — none of which had a statistically significant impact on eyelid droopiness. 

“Identical twins are genetically destined to have similar facial and eyelid features, so any difference in these structures is primarily related to environmental factors,” explained Dr. Guyuron. “We assessed the correlations of many different environmental factors that could contribute to upper eyelid droopy eyelids and wearing contact lenses was the only external factor that was linked. This is attributed to the recurrent traction of the eyelid during placement and removal of the lens.”

Researcher’s analyzed digital photographs and social/medical history questionnaires from a database that contained information collected at the annual Twins Day Festival in Twinsburg, Ohio, from 2008 to 2010.  

To view the complete study, visit the Aesthetic Surgery Journal site at:


About the Aesthetic Surgery Journal 

Aesthetic Surgery Journal is a peer-reviewed international journal focusing on scientific developments and clinical techniques in aesthetic surgery. An official publication of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS), ASJ is also the official English-language journal of many major international societies of plastic, aesthetic and reconstructive surgery representing South America, Central America, Europe, Asia, and the Middle East. It is also the official journal of the Canadian Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery and The Rhinoplasty Society.

ASJ was indexed with MEDLINE/PubMed in 2008 and covered by the Thomson Reuters' Journal Citation Report since 2011. ASJ's current (2013) Impact Factor is 2.034. In the 2014 JCR, ASJ ranked 65th out of 202 journals in the overall surgery category. ASJ is presently ranked #1 among all aesthetic surgery journals and #2 among all plastic surgery journals.

ABOUT The Aesthetic Society

The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, is recognized as the world's leading organization devoted entirely to aesthetic plastic surgery and cosmetic medicine of the face and body. The Aesthetic Society is comprised of over 2,600 Plastic Surgeons; Active Members are certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery (USA) or by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada and have extensive training in the complete spectrum of surgical and nonsurgical aesthetic procedures. International Active Members are certified by equivalent boards of their respective countries. All members worldwide adhere to a strict Code of Ethics and must meet stringent membership requirements.


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