Facial plast Surg 2000; 16(4): 325-336
DOI: 10.1055/s-2000-15548
Copyright © 2000 by Thieme Medical Publishers, Inc., 333 Seventh Avenue, New York, NY 10001, USA. Tel.: +1(212) 584-4662

Reanimation of the Paralyzed Eyelid with the Enhanced Palpebral Spring or the Gold Weight: Modern Replacements for Tarsorrhaphy

Robert E. Levine1 , Jonathan P. Shapiro2
  • 1Department of Ophthalmology, USC School of Medicine, and House Ear Clinic, Los Angeles, CA
  • 2Department of Ophthalmology, Mount Sinai Medical Center, New York, NY
Further Information

Publication History

Publication Date:
31 December 2000 (online)


The enhanced palpebral spring and the gold weight are the modern devices that should nearly completely replace tarsorrhaphy in the management of ocular problems secondary to facial paralysis. They actually reanimate the lid, rather than merely hold the lids closed in a disfigured position, as does tarsorrhaphy. The surgical techniques of each procedure, results, and pros and cons of each are compared. Personal experience with over 1400 spring implantations is discussed, as is experience with the use of bandage contact lenses in lieu of lid surgery. The gold weight implantation is simpler to learn and perform than the enhanced spring procedure, in which the levator is tightened in addition to implanting the spring. However, when it is really important to close the eye well, the spring is the superior procedure. Unlike the weight, the spring closes the eye well in the supine position, such as when the patient sleeps.