Overview and Facts about Eyelid Malposition
The position of the eyelid is very important to the health of the eye. The eyelids need to be in a normal position to ensure eye protection, proper tear production, and drainage, and to allow for normal blinking. Eyelid malposition is an ophthalmology condition that relates to the placement of the lid. Entropion eyelids are those that are “turned in” toward the eye, while ectropion eyelids are lower eyelids that are “turned out” away from the eye.
Signs and Symptoms of Eyelid Malposition
A droopy eyelid, also called eyelid ptosis, is the most common symptom of eyelid malpositions. This is because of poor muscle function in the eyelid and a subsequent inability to raise it. Other signs and symptoms of eyelid malposition include:
- Impaired vision
- Pain in the eyelid
- Infections due to the eyelashes rubbing on the cornea
- Redness of the eye
Causes and Risk Factors of Eyelid Malposition
The majority of eye malposition occurs due to the aging process, but in other cases, causes may include:
- Eye surface tightening due to overexposure to the sun
- Tightness or scarring of the facial skin that affects the lid
- Chemical or thermal burns
- Previous surgery to the eye, such as a cataract extraction
- Skin cancer like basal cell carcinoma
Tests and Diagnosis of Eyelid Malposition
An eyelid examination is generally all that is needed to test for and diagnose this ophthalmologic condition, but a deeper examination is needed to determine the exact cause for eyelid malpositions. Determining the cause of eyelid malpositions can help to determine the best treatment option.
A biopsy can help determine whether cancer is the underlying cause, while a medical history review will reveal any procedures in the past that could have caused it.
Treatment and Care for Eyelid Malposition
Eyelid malposition can be repaired with surgical procedures designed to return the eyelid to its natural position. This procedure is done with local anesthesia and involves tightening and repositioning the lid, while also restoring balance to the surrounding muscles and tendons.