Entropion is a condition in which the eyelid turns inward. Consequently, the eye becomes irritated as the skin and eyelashes rub against it. Entropion is most common in older people, and it usually affects the lower eyelid. It is also common in people who have suffered an infection called trachoma that can cause scarring of the inner eyelids. Entropion can range in severity from only occurring when the patient squeezes their eyes shut or blinks hard to being a chronic and constant condition. While eye drops can relieve the discomfort, the only permanent cure in Tampa for entropion is surgery.
What Does the Surgery Involve?
We typically administer an IV sedative and a local anesthetic in the eyelid area to keep the patient comfortable. The surgery is an outpatient procedure that is performed in the comfort of our office in Tampa. It generally takes just minutes to complete. The exact surgical technique will depend on the cause of the entropion.
While it is usually age-related, entropion can also be caused by scarring from previous injury, illness or surgery. If the condition is due to age, the surgeon may tighten the affected muscles and tendons by removing a small part of the eyelid.
Benefits of the Surgery
The surgery produces a number of benefits, including:
1) The patient will feel a lot better – Entropion causes extreme discomfort and irritation, for the eyelashes are rubbing against the cornea. It can cause such unpleasant symptoms as:
• A sensation that something is in the eye
• Sensitivity to light and wind
• Watery eyes
• Eyelid crusting caused by mucus discharge
• Reddened eye
• Trouble opening the affected eye
• Ulcers on the cornea
2) The patient will not develop any eye infections – In entropion, the eyelashes scratch the cornea. Those scratches allow bacteria to enter the eye and cause an infection.
3) The patient will not suffer vision loss – Untreated entropion will eventually cause vision loss, for the eyelashes will permanently damage the cornea over time.