Eyelid retraction, has received limited attention and it has passively been interpreted as the result of an overactive levator palpebrae superioris muscle secondary to midbrain injury. However, eyelid retractions can occur in other neurological diseases, not directly related with the midbrain. We report three patients who developed eyelid retraction. One patient had a bilateral eyelid retraction, related with Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD). Another patient had a unilateral right eyelid retraction associated with a thalamic-mesencephalic infarct. The third patient had a bilateral pontine infarction on magnetic resonance imaging. In the patient with CJD, eyelid retraction did not subside. Among patients with infarctions, the retraction persisted after focal symptoms had subsided, showing an evolution that was apparently independent of the basic process. The analysis of these patients allows us to conclude that the pathogenesis of eyelid retraction includes supranuclear mechanisms in both the development and maintenance of the phenomenon. Unilateral or bilateral eyelid retraction does not alter the normal function of eyelid, which ever had normal close eye blink. In these reported cases, a hyperactivity of levator palpebrae superioris muscle was clinically ruled out.
Creutzfelt-Jakob Syndrome; Eyelid Diseases; Mesencephalon; Nervous system Diseases; Ocular Physiological Phenomena