What is it?
The eyelids have a fundamental mission in protecting the eye. The ocular anterior segment, especially the cornea, are very delicate structures that need to be in perfect condition to maintain their functions. The eyelids are essential elements for that task, and any change in position can lead to a bad eye protection, abnormal ocular surface, and visual impairment.
The main eyelid malpositions are upper eyelid ptosis (drooping eyelid), entropion and ectropion (eyelids rotated inward or outward), and malposition of the eyelashes (triaquiasis).
Ptosis, or drooping of the upper eyelid, is perhaps the most common. It is due to poor muscle function to raise the lid. If for some reason this muscle does not work well, the lid can not be opened properly, leading to discomfort of an aesthetic nature. However, if the eyelid falls too, it can interfere with vision. In children, this can lead to amblyopia.
In ectropion and entropion, the lid margin loses its normal alignment with the eye. The lid falls out (ectropion) or rotated inward toward the eyeball (entropion). Ectropion ocular exposure increases, which leads to chronic eye irritation, pain, and tearing. In Entropion, the eyelashes are continuously in contact with the cornea, causing further irritation.
The growth or altered sprouting of eyelashes is called trichiasis. The constant rubbing of the eyelashes with the cornea can create serious problems, such as erosions or ulcers, as well as a very uncomfortable stinging sensation to the patient.
Treating malpositioned eyelids is surgical, depending on the severity. In cases of trichiasis surgery, laser or radiofrequency are used. These are surgeries with very good prognosis, and are performed under local anesthesia, except in the case of children, which are operated under general anesthesia.
It is important for all patients to be evaluated by specialists in this pathology ophthalmologists in the case of disturbances or ocular surface discomfort. Moreover in the case of treating children, where compromised vision is a risk.