Ectropion

Ectropion is the ophthalmic disorder in which the eyelid and eyelashes pull away from the cornea, and reorient outwards.

What causes ectropion?

This ophthalmological disorder can occur for a number of reasons, hence the different types of ectropion in the eye. The most common causes are:

  • Ageing. This natural phenomenon is accompanied by the weakening of eye muscles and tendons, which affects the way the eyelids stick to the eye.
  • Genetic diseases.
  • Scars or previous operations. These can affect the way the eyelid rests against the eye.
  • Facial nerve palsies. Bell’s palsy, for example, affects the eye muscles and can lead to ectropion.
  • Cancer. Certain tumor formations can affect the eyelid, turning it outwards.

Risk factors

Patients with certain features are more likely to suffer from ectropion.

  • Contact lenses;
  • Touching the eye repeatedly;
  • Long-term administration of eye drops;
  • Old age;
  • Previous trauma;
  • Surgeries on the eye;
  • Skin disorders that also affect the eyelid;
  • Facial paralysis.

How many types of ectropion are there?

There are several types of ectropion in the eye:

  1. Senile or involutional ectropion. It occurs with ageing and is the most common.
  2. Congenital ectropion. The patient has had it since birth.
  3. Paralytic ectropion. It has to do with facial paralysis that affects the muscles of the face and causes the eyelid to turn outwards.
  4. Cicatricial ectropion. It is due to previous injury or surgery to the face. It can also occur in allergic skin reactions.
  5. Mechanical ectropion. It occurs as a result of tumors separating the eyeball from the eyelid.

What are the symptoms of ectropion?

Normally, every time we blink, tears are distributed on the surface of the eye, which cleanse, lubricate and protect the eye from injury or infection. Tears then drain into holes in the inner corners of the eyelid. In patients with ectropion of the eye, the lower eyelid pulls away from the eyeball, preventing proper tears drainage. Thus, the following signs appear:

  • Dry eyes;
  • Sensation of foreign object;
  • Photophobia (sensitivity to light);
  • Epiphora;
  • Decreased quality of vision;
  • Eye pain;
  • Redness;
  • Irritability;
  • Excessive tearing;
  • Other bacterial infections (e.g. conjunctivitis).

How is ectropion diagnosed?

Although ectropion is one of the obvious eye diseases (unlike ocular toxoplasmosis, for example), the specialist will begin the consultation by reviewing the medical history and performing an ocular examination.

The ophthalmologist uses various investigations to determine the muscle tone and tension of each eyelid to determine the cause and type of ectropion. If it is not a congenital or involutional disorder, the specialist also examines the tissues around the eyeball to determine whether the disorder has been caused by a tumor, scar, or facial paralysis.

How is ectropion treated?

In the early stages, ophthalmological treatment for ectropion consists of:

  •  Eye ointments;
  • Artificial tears (Note: if ectropion has been caused by the administration of certain types of eye drops, that treatment will be discontinued on the advice of the specialist).

Surgery for ectropion

In severe cases, surgery is required.

Specialists use different procedures to put the eyelid back in place in a physiological position, depending on the type of ectropion.

  • Senile or involutional ectropion is corrected by removing a segment of the lower eyelid.
  • Cicatricial ectropion involves the use of a skin graft to restore the anatomical plane.
  • Paralytic ectropion may also involve an upper eyelid implant in addition to lower eyelid surgery.

This operation is non-invasive, painless and performed on an outpatient basis with local anesthesia. The patient returns for control for:

  • Dressing removal;
  • Check the position of the eyelid(s);
  • Removal of sutures.

In some cases, postoperative medication – antibiotics or drops – is given to reduce inflammation and prevent infection.

When to go to the doctor?

Schedule an ophthalmological examination if:

  • You notice that one or both eyelids tend to turn outwards;
  • Your eyes are dry or, on the contrary, excessively wet.

Go immediately to the doctor if you have been diagnosed with ectropion of the eye, and you have any of the following symptoms:

  • Decreased visual acuity;
  • Severe redness of the eyes;
  • Increasing sensitivity to light.

These can indicate severe corneal damage that permanently affects vision. At Dr. Holhoș clinics, you get the best care: well-trained specialists and state-of-the-art ophthalmological technology.

Text medically reviewed by Dr. Teodor Holhoș, Ophthalmic Surgeon
Written by Dr. Holhos Team
Diseases

Ophthalmic migraine is most common in the 40s. It manifests itself in visual impairment and even temporary blindness.

Keratitis, also known as “corneal ulcer”, is an inflammation of the cornea. If detected early, the ophthalmological disorder is easy to treat and heals quickly.

Diplopia is an ophthalmological disease in which you see two images of the same thing. The condition can affect anyone, but is more common after the age of 60.

Xanthelasma is a member of the xanthomas family and represents fatty deposits in the skin cells around the eyes. It is visible as yellow, harmless bumps.

Colorblind people perceive colors differently from most people. Most of the time, this ophthalmological disorder makes it difficult to distinguish between certain colors.

Epiphora is an ophthalmological disorder manifested by excessive tearing of the eyes. Most of the time, it is not severe and disappears on its own. However, if you are experiencing this and the problem persists, we recommend that you make an appointment for an ophthalmological examination. Treatment can be different, depending on the cause of the epiphora.

If you notice a yellow spot on the white of your eye, you are most likely dealing with pinguecula. The ophthalmological disorder is not severe, but the symptoms can be uncomfortable. Find out how to treat pinguecula and, more importantly, how you can prevent it.

Entropion is the ophthalmological disorder in which the eyelid of the eye turns inwards. It is different from ectropion, where the eyelid turns outwards. It most often occurs in older people and usually only affects the lower eyelid.

It is possible that you may also be experiencing ocular toxoplasmosis without knowing it. This retinal disorder is extremely common in our century and is manifested by eye discomfort and blurred vision.

Ectropion is the ophthalmic disorder in which the eyelid and eyelashes pull away from the cornea, and reorient outwards.

One of the most common types of headache is headache of ocular origin. It occurs as a result of an ophthalmological disorder.

Blepharitis is an ophthalmological disorder that manifests itself by inflammation of the eyelids. At the base of the eyelids, the patient notices small crusts formed by solidified oil particles or bacteria that collect in the crease at the corner of the eye.

Uveitis is an ophthalmological disorder of the uveal tract, manifested by changes in vision and eye pain.

Among the most common ophthalmological disorders is hordeolum. This is popularly known as an “stye” and is an infection of the eyelids.

The drooping eyelid is known in medical terms as “palpebral ptosis”. It manifests itself by narrowing the visual slit of one or both eyes, creating aesthetic and functional discomfort.

See all
MAKE AN APPOINTMENT

You can make an appointment quickly via the form on the right, or directly over the phone. Our colleagues at the reception desk will be happy to provide you with the availability and information you need to make an appointment. Filling in the form does not represent the registration or confirmation of an appointment, but submitting an appointment request. You will be contacted by our team to check the availability of doctors and make an appointment.

SEE PRACTICES AND CLINICS

Information note on examination within the Dr. Holhoș Ophthalmology Network

Dr. Holhoș Ophthalmology Network reserves the right to request payment in advance (by payment order or in cash at the reception desk of network clinics) from patients who:

– Cancel two consecutive appointments at our clinics

or

– do not attend two consecutive appointments at our clinics.

Thank you for your understanding!