Entropion is a condition in which the lower eyelid and eyelashes roll inward towards the eye.
Entropion is the medical term used to describe a condition in which the lower eyelid and eyelashes roll inward towards the eye. The skin of the eyelid and the eyelashes rub against the cornea and the conjunctiva causing ocular discomfort irritation and tearing. Entropion occurs mostly due to the relaxation of eyelid tissues as a result of aging. Eyelid skin is the thinnest skin of the body and is thus more prone to stretching. If the eyelashes come into contact with the cornea for an extended period of time this might result in chronic conjunctivitis corneal infection or ulcers. This can compromise your vision.
Although most cases of entropion occur due to advancing age there are a few other possible causes. These include congenital factors and scarring or spasticity. The congenital form of entropion is extremely rare and might arise from developmental abnormalities. An entropion caused by scarring of the eyelid’s inner surface can occur due to chemical burns ocular diseases infection or allergic reactions. A spastic entropion is a secondary result of inflammation eye surgery or injury.
Symptoms of Entropion include:
- Sagging skin around the eyes
- Redness and irritation of the eye
- Sensitivity to light and wind
- Sandy gritty burning feeling
- Eye discomfort
- Mucous discharge
To treat mild forms of entropion artificial tears are used to lubricate the eye and reduce irritation. However entropion should be surgically repaired before the rubbing of the eyelashes against the cornea causes scarring and infection. This surgical procedure is relatively easy; it involves the tightening of the eyelid muscles through a miniscule incision in the eyelid to correct the eyelid position. It is an outpatient procedure using local anesthesia. The surgery lasts approximately fifteen to twenty minutes and is successful in over 98% of cases. Post-operatively the surgeon gives patients a patch to wear overnight to prevent them from rubbing their eye in their sleep. The surgeon will also provide antibiotics to use during the recovery time of approximately one to two weeks. Following the surgery patients often notice a significant improvement in their aesthetic appearance ocular discomfort irritation and tearing.