What is Entropion?
Entropion is a lower eyelid that is rolled or flipped inward. When this occurs, the lower eyelid skin and lashes can rub on the surface of the eye, causing significant irritation and pain. When the lower eyelid is rolled inward, it causes the surface of the eye to become red and irritated.Entropion can cause the following symptoms:
- Redness of the eye
- Blurry vision
- A scratchy or gritty sensation when blinking
- Mucus and crusting
- Breakdown or infections of the cornea
What Causes Entropion?Entropion can have various causes including:
- Age-related laxity of the eyelids
- Overriding skin on the lower eyelid in Asian patients (epiblepharon)
- Scarring of the inner surface of the eyelid (conjunctiva)
- Previous eye surgery
- Previous eyelid surgery
- Chemical burns to the eye
- Infections / conjunctivitis
- Inflammatory autoimmune disorder (e.g.lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, ocular cicatricial pemphigoid)
- Stevens Johnsons Syndrome
How Does Entropion Repair Surgery Work?
The surgery is done in a surgery center with IV sedation or in the office with local anesthesia. Entropion can oftentimes be repaired by simply tightening the lower eyelid. Sometimes, additional procedures are necessary such as removing excess eyelid skin, using special membrane grafts, or anti-scarring injections. At the end of the surgery, the lower eyelid should be properly positioned so that the lashes are no longer turned inward and rubbing on the eye. The actual surgery can take from 15 minutes to 1 hour. Patients go home the same day and are able to have their eyes open immediately after surgery.
If patients are having significant discomfort leading up to their surgery, there are a variety of options to help reduce the discomfort while awaiting surgery:
- Frequent lubrication with drops and gels
- Taping of the eyelid
- Use of a soft contact lens that acts as a protective barrier
How does Dr. Lee Customize an Entropion Repair?
The proper surgery depends on the cause of entropion and your individual anatomy. Dr. Lee has a variety of techniques to correct entropion and will help you choose the best option.
Some patients need additional procedures to help their eyelids function properly in protecting and lubricating the eyes. If patients are interested in refreshing the appearance of the eyelids at the same time, they sometimes choose to combine entropion repair with upper blepharoplasty, lower blepharoplasty, or other procedures.
Does insurance cover Entropion Repair?
Insurance typically covers entropion repair because entropion can cause significant pain, discomfort, and even cause damage or infections of the cornea. Without prompt treatment, it can sometimes lead to corneal scarring and vision loss.
What is the “down time” after Entropion Repair?
As with any eyelid surgery, patients should expect some bruising and swelling for at least 1-2 weeks. Most patients look good by 1 month after surgery when most of the swelling is gone. The “final result” is at 2-3 months after surgery.
Patients apply ice to the eyelids for the first 2-3 days after surgery to reduce the swelling. There is minimal pain after surgery, and most patients simply use ice and Tylenol for any discomfort. Vision may be slightly blurry for a few days due to eyelid swelling and the antibiotic ointment. Patients can walk around the same day of surgery and do light activities, including using the computer or watching TV. They should avoid heavy lifting, straining, or bending for the first 2 weeks. Antibiotic ointment is applied to the incisions for the first two weeks. The sutures typically dissolve on their own.
Schedule Your Consultation Today
If you are suffering from entropion, schedule your consultation today to get started with Dr. Lee. Fixing the entropion will eliminate the pain and irritation in your eyes and help you protect your eyes and vision.