Entropion is inward turning of the eyelid. It causes the lashes and lid skin to rub the surface of the eye. This causes discomfort, watering and redness of the eye. If untreated it can lead to ulceration of the surface of the eye, followed by scarring which could cause loss of vision.
Lower lid entropion is usually due to aging changes in the eyelid making it lax and prone to flip inwards. To begin with the entropion is intermittent but it often becomes constant later on. It often affects one eye at a time but it is not uncommon for both eyes to be involved eventually. Entropion, especially if it occurs in the upper lid, can be due to scarring on the inside of the lid caused by infection, disease or injury. In Britain, entropion of the upper eyelid is very uncommon compared to the lower lid.
Entropion is treated by lid surgery, which is generally done under local anaesthetic as a day case.
Temporary treatments until surgery takes place include:
Taping the lid skin to prevent the lid turning in. By placing a piece of micropore tape on the lower eyelid, gently pulling it down and then fixing the lower part of the tape to the cheek the lid is turned outwards, stopping the irritation . If the eye is sticky or infected, antibiotic drops will keep this under control until the operation can be carried out.
Botulinum toxin injections can be used to temporarily weaken the muscles that are pushing the lid inwards.