Everyone wants to see bright, open eyes when they look in the mirror, but for many adults, drooping eyelids negatively impact their appearance and leave them looking and feeling less than their best. In the past, only invasive surgical interventions could help to improve the appearance of sagging eyelids. Enter Upneeq prescription eye drops. With daily use, Upneeq eye drops lift the upper eyelid, giving patients a more lifted, smooth, and youthful look. U.S. Dermatology Partners is proud to offer Upneeq eye drops for patients looking for an alternative to eyelid surgery. You can learn more on this page or by using our online form to schedule a consultation visit.
Upneeq is a prescription eye drop that is FDA-approved to address low-lying eyelids. These eye drops contain oxymetazoline hydrochloride ophthalmic solution. This scientifically backed formula has proven effective in lifting low-lying eyelids and improving the appearance of hooded or saggy eyes. In addition to impacting appearance, low-lying eyelids can block or limit the field of vision, negatively impacting patients’ daily lives. Designed for daily use, these eye drops deliver dramatic results within minutes of application.
Anyone who has drooping eyelids may be a good candidate for treatment with Upneeq eye drops. Specifically, these prescription eye drops were created to address acquired ptosis. This condition, also called acquired blepharoptosis, is a common medical concern that causes eyelids to appear droopy, puffy, or saggy. In most cases, acquired ptosis is referred to simply as drooping or low-lying eyelids. Drooping eyelids are most often a concern among adults between the ages of 30 and 60. While this condition is relatively common, many people aren’t even aware they have acquired ptosis. Only 15% of people with this condition have received a diagnosis, and even fewer seek treatment.
The cause of acquired ptosis can vary from person to person, but it typically occurs when upper eyelid muscles stretch and weaken. Age is the main reason this occurs. As we grow older, the eyelid muscles weaken and change shape, allowing the eyelid to droop. In addition to aging, other underlying causes of acquired ptosis include regular contact wear, undergoing surgical procedures like cataract removal, and certain medical issues. Because acquired ptosis may be a warning sign of other medical concerns like stroke, it’s important to review your health and medication history with your dermatologist before beginning treatment with Upneeq.
In addition to reviewing your medical history to ensure you are not experiencing drooping eyelids related to another condition, your dermatologist will also review your medical history to minimize the risk for adverse effects. It’s especially important to let your dermatologist know if you or your close relatives have a history of high blood pressure since Upneeq is formulated with alpha-adrenergic agonists, which can increase blood pressure. It’s important to be monitored more closely by your dermatologist when using Upneeq eyedrops in combination with other alpha-adrenergic agonists. You should also use Upneeq with greater caution if you are currently or have ever taken medication to treat high blood pressure.
Finally, patients taking antidepressants formulated with monoamine oxidase inhibitors should consult with their dermatologist and/or physician when using Upneeq eye drops. This class of antidepressants can impact the body’s ability to safely and effectively absorb some of the active ingredients in Upneeq eye drops.
Upneeq is a daily-use eye drop that offers a dramatic improvement in the appearance of low-lying lids. Treatment begins with a thorough consultation. As discussed in the previous section, it’s important to consult with a dermatologist about your medical history to ensure Upneeq is the best treatment option for you. If Upneeq is not right for you, other cosmetic dermatology procedures may offer satisfactory results including surgical intervention called blepharoplasty. If at all possible, your dermatologist will work with you to utilize the more conservative solution, Upneeq.
If Upneeq eye drops are the best treatment solution for your eyes, your dermatologist will provide a prescription. With your prescription, you’ll receive a set of small, single-use application vials. Each vial contains your daily dose of Upneeq prescription eye drops. You’ll place one drop in each eye once a day. After applying the drops, the medication in Upneeq will go to work. The alpha-adrenergic agonist in Upneeq, oxymetazoline, will cause the levator palpebrae muscle (sometimes called the Muller’s muscle) to contract. This lifts and tightens the upper eyelids. Within a few minutes, you should see a noticeable difference with the most significant improvement after two hours. In studies, participants saw an average of 1 mm improvement in eyelid droop with daily use of Upneeq. While this improvement won’t rival the change possible with surgical interventions, many people are surprised by just how much better their eyelids look.
Like any medication, there are some side effects associated with Upneeq eye drops.
The most frequently reported side effects impacted between 1 and 5% of patients in the clinical trials and included:
These side effects were rare, and they typically cleared up quickly. Patients whose symptoms do not recede quickly should consult with their dermatologist before continued use. Additionally, anyone experiencing warning signs of an allergic reaction, including itching and swelling around the eyes, should discontinue use and consult their dermatologist. Patients with a personal or family history of high blood pressure should monitor their blood pressure regularly when using Upneeq and consult with their dermatologist or physician right away if they notice elevated blood pressure. Finally, more serious, rare symptoms like severe eye pain and blurred vision that do not fade quickly need to be reported right away.
Upneeq eye drops are designed for daily use. After applying the eye drops, most patients see the desired results after about two hours. These results last up to six hours. After six hours, patients will notice their eyelids gradually returning to the low-lying position. When used each day, the results of Upneeq eye drops are shown to remain effective.
*Results may vary by individual