Ectropion occurs when the lower lid droops down and outward. It is also called Lax Eyelid Syndrome (LES). This can occur naturally due to age, or from disease or injury to the eyelid. Ectropion can cause corneal exposure keratitis, since the lids cannot close and blink all the way. This contributes to irritation from insufficient tear film. For this reason, many people get ectropion repair, which is the corrective procedure for ectropion. This results in less corneal irritation, and the eyes are able to achieve a full blink.
One way to tell if you have ectropion is if your sclera (the white part of your eye) is showing underneath your iris (the colored ring of your eye). This is called scleral show, and it is not visible on an eye that has adequate lid tightness.
This is an up-close photo of an eye with ectropion. This patient has scleral show, and you can see that the eyeball above the lid is red and irritated due to corneal exposure. The eyelid is not being pulled down, but has naturally started to droop and pull away from the eye over time.
If you experience any of these symptoms or think you may have ectropion, call our office at (859) 278-9486 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Dudee. You can also email our office at firstname.lastname@example.org or send an appointment request through our online portal.