What Is Ectropion?
Ectropion refers to the outward turning (eversion) of the lower eyelid which exposes the eye and its mucosa to air and results in its dryness. It also causes excessive tearing (epiphora), and in case tears off, the eye gets drier. If left untreated, this disease makes interior mucosa of eyelids thickened and inflamed, and finally damage the eye
What Causes Ectropion?
Its cause is the weakness of the muscle which maintains eyelids on the eye. This disease is usually seen in people above 60 years old; however, it might also be congenital or due to scars from other surgeries and secondary to Bell's palsy or caused by burns or other skin diseases.
What Are the Symptoms of Ectropion?
- Sandy feeling
- Red, inflamed and swollen eyelid
- Excessive tearing
How Is Ectropion Diagnosed?
This disease is diagnosed by a routine eye exam.
What Is Ectropion Treatment?
Choosing the best treatment for ectropion depends on its cause. Artificial tear drop or lubricating ointment is the temporary treatment. Nevertheless, the cure, especially in the age-related type, is eyelid surgery, in which eyelid is shortened and tightened. This surgery is generally conducted with an incision at the outer part of the eye. To do the surgery, only some tiny stitches are made in the outer part of the eye, which are removed after 7 to 14 days. To treat the kind of ectropion caused by the scars following burns or other surgeries, skin graft is usually used. This graft is taken from patient’s upper eyelid or back of the ear. The sites for the graft and the surgery are completely healed within two weeks.