Ectropion Repair

An ectropion is when the lower eyelid becomes weak. The eyelid sags away from its normal position against the eyeball. This can happen in older people when the skin and muscle tone of the face loosens with age.

CAUSES

  • Age.

  • Sagging or too much skin of the face and lids.

  • Certain skin diseases.

  • Scarring from burns, chemical burns, plastic or facial surgery, or trauma.

SYMPTOMS

  • A lot of tearing.

  • Outwardly drooping lid.

  • Sagging skin around the eyes.

  • Sensitivity to light and wind.

DIAGNOSIS

An eye professional can tell you if you have an ectropion during an eye exam.

LET YOUR CAREGIVER KNOW ABOUT:

  • Medications taken including herbs, eye drops, prescription medications, over-the-counter medications, and creams.

  • Use of steroids, such as prednisone (by mouth or creams).

  • Use of aspirin or blood-thinning medicines.

  • History of bleeding or blood problems.

  • Past problems with anesthetics or novocaine.

  • Possibility of pregnancy, if this applies.

  • History of blood clots (thrombophlebitis).

  • Past surgery.

  • Other health problems.

BEFORE THE PROCEDURE

Drops or ointments may be prescribed. This will relieve irritation and protect the eyeball until the lid is repaired.

PROCEDURE

Outwardly turned eyes can only be repaired with surgery.

  • This surgery can be done on an outpatient basis. A needle will inject a drug (local anesthesia) in the eyelid to make the area loose feeling.

  • There are many different ways used to repair ectropions. Your doctor will decide which is best for you.

AFTER THE PROCEDURE

Some stitches may need to be removed. They may be removed all at once or in several steps between 5 and 10 days after surgery. Sometimes stitches that keep the eyelid edges lined up are left for a few days longer than the stitches in the skin of the eyelid.

HOME CARE INSTRUCTIONS

  • Eye drops, ointments or pills by mouth may be prescribed. Use as directed for the full time directed.

  • Let your caregiver know if your eye becomes more red and swollen with the use of medications. This could be an allergic reaction.

  • Only take over-the-counter or prescription medicines for pain, discomfort or fever as directed by your caregiver.

  • The material used to cover the wound (dressing) should be kept clean and dry until removed or changed. Do as directed by your caregiver.

  • Avoid lifting and bending over until you are told otherwise.

  • Recovery time is short. You may resume normal activities as directed or allowed.

SEEK MEDICAL CARE IF:

  • There is redness, swelling or increasing pain in the wound or around the eye or face.

  • Pus is coming from the wound.

  • The eye itself becomes red and inflamed.

  • The eye is sensitive to light.

  • An unexplained oral temperature above 102° F (38.9° C) develops.

  • There is a breaking open of the wound edges after stitches (sutures) have been removed.

  • You still feel like you have something in your eye after the surgery.

SEEK IMMEDIATE MEDICAL CARE IF:

  • There is any change in vision.

  • You develop a rash.

  • You have a hard time breathing.

  • You develop any reaction or side effects to medications given.