BACKGROUND: The most common form of blepharoptosis is involutional ptosis, commonly caused by the effect of progressive age on the levator aponeurosis. The treatment for this acquired ptosis is strictly surgical. For the plastic surgeon, the ideal lid ptosis repair provides the longest efficacy, the fewest complications and revisions, and, ultimately, the highest functional and cosmetic outcome for the patient. With over 100 different described techniques, there exists a need to make a comparison. A systematic review is considered a higher level of evidence because it is a review designed to be reproducible, with predetermined inclusion and exclusion criteria. To date, there has been no systematic review to study the efficacy and complication rates between different involutional lid ptosis repair techniques. METHODS: A systematic search of the English literature published in the PubMed and Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials databases yielded trials on comparison of different adult upper lid involutional ptosis repair techniques regarding their efficacy and complication rates. Predetermined inclusion and exclusion criteria were used. RESULTS: This systematic review revealed that there are no randomized, prospective, controlled comparison studies on involutional lid ptosis repair techniques. CONCLUSIONS: Although this systematic review revealed a lack of level I data in comparing the different ptosis repair techniques, it is important that the existing studies be reviewed and pooled to improve patient outcomes and to provide direction for future research. In the absence of higher level data studies, the authors propose a treatment algorithm for involutional ptosis repair.
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