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Ectropion - Definition


Ectropion is eversion of the edge of the lower eyelid: the edge is turned outward revealing the conjunctiva or mucous membrane that lines the inside of the eyelid. It differs from entropion which is the turning of the same lower eyelid inwardly toward the eye. Ectropion is not usually responsible for any symptoms, but red eyes, tearing, or tingling sensations are possible. Ectropion is mostly seen in the elderly, whose tissues become looser with age, but it can also be due to trauma or damage to the facial nerve. Treatment is aimed at compensating for the absence of protection of the eye, with artificial tears or ointments, sometimes in combination with forced eye closure pending possible surgical care.