Entropion is when the lower eyelid and eyelashes turn towards the eye. The eyelashes and skin of the eyelid rub against the cornea (the front part of the eye) and conjunctiva (the mucous membrane that protects the eye). This rubbing can lead to excessive tearing, crusting of the eyelid, mucous discharge, irritation of the cornea, impaired vision, and a feeling that something is in the eye.
Ectropion is the general term to describe sagging and outward turning of the lower eyelid and eyelashes. This rubbing can lead to excessive tearing, crusting of the eyelid, mucous discharge and irritation of the eye. During blinking, the eyelids normally sweep across the surface of the cornea. Tearing occurs because the eyelids are not able to wipe the surface of the cornea properly to pump the tears into the tear duct.
Most cases of entropion and ectropion are related to the process of aging.
Currently, the NEI does not have a fact sheet on these conditions.
For more information from other health sites, please visit the following webpages:
Medline Plus, Entropion
Medline Plus, Ectropion
American Society of Ophthalmic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Entropion�Eyelids That Turn In
American Society of Ophthalmic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Ectropion�Eyelids That Turn Out
You may also wish to contact our Information Specialist:
Telephone: (301) 496-5248