Search Encyclopedia:    
List of Topics Print This Page
 

Entropion


Definition:

Entropion is the turning in of an edge of an eyelid, causing the lashes to rub against the eye. It usually is seen on the lower eyelid.

Causes, incidence, and risk factors:

Entropion can be present at birth (congenital).

In babies, it rarely causes problems because the lashes are very soft and do not easily damage the eye. In older people, the condition is usually caused by a spasm or weakening of the muscles surrounding the lower part of the eye.

Although rare in North America and Europe, trachoma infection can cause scarring of the inner side of the lid, which may cause entropion. Trachoma scarring is one of the three leading causes of blindness in the world.

Risk factors for entropion are:

Symptoms:
Signs and tests:

Your health care provider can usually diagnose this condition by looking at your eyelids. Special tests are usually not necessary.

Treatment:

Artificial tears can keep the eye from becoming dry and may help you feel better. Surgery to correct the position of the eyelids usually works well.

Expectations (prognosis):

The outlook is usually good if the condition is treated before eye damage occurs.

Complications:

Dry eye and irritation may increase the risk of:

Calling your health care provider:

Call for an appointment with your health care provider if:

If you have entropion, the following should be considered an emergency:

  • Decreasing vision
  • Light sensitivity
  • Pain
  • Eye redness that increases rapidly
Prevention:

Most cases cannot be prevented. Treatment reduces the risk of complications.

See your doctor if you have red eyes after visiting an area where there is trachoma (North Africa, South Asia).

References:

Howard GR. Eyelid retraction. In: Yanoff M, Duker JS, eds. Ophthalmology. 3rd ed. St. Louis, Mo: Mosby Elsevier; 2008:chap 12.4.


Review Date: 11/4/2012
Reviewed By: David C. Dugdale, III, MD, Professor of Medicine, Division of General Medicine, Department of Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine. Also reviewed by A.D.A.M. Health Solutions, Ebix, Inc., Editorial Team: David Zieve, MD, MHA, David R. Eltz, and Stephanie Slon.

The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed physician should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. Copyright 2002 A.D.A.M., Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.

   View History
  Entropion

   
   

 

About UPHS   Contact Us   Site Map   Privacy Statement   Legal Disclaimer   Terms of Use

The University of Pennsylvania Health System, Philadelphia, PA 1-800-789-PENN © 2014, The Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania