Ectropion vs. Entropion

A droopy, saggy or loose lower eyelid, which may become red and sore is called an ectropion. This can be fixed with a simple surgical procedure.


The most commonest causes of ectropion is ageing, where the eyelid becomes saggy. Constant wiping from the associated watery eye may then pull the lid further away from the eye. Ectropion may also develop from neurological conditions, including Bell’s Palsy. Any condition that tightens the skin around the lower lid, such as scarring, can also lead to an ectropion as the lid is pulled downwards and outwards.


The most obvious sign of an ectropion is a saggy,  lower lid that is not sitting snuggly against the eyeball .  In severe cases, the inner surface of eyelid maybe turned outwards, making the eyelid look red and swollen. Patients may complain of an irritated, gritty/sandy feeling, burning sensation, mucous build-up and/or excessive tearing.


Artificial tear eye drops and ointments to lubricate the eye can temporarily relieve the symptoms of an ectropion; however, eyelid surgery to tighten the lower lid is necessary to fully correct this problem.


If the eyelid is turning inwards towards the eye, the eyelashes rub against the eye causing considerable discomfort. This is an entropion. There are several reasons why the eyelid may be turning in and treatment will depend on the underlying cause.

At Gold Coast Eye Hospital we are able to offer eyelid surgery for ectropions and entroptions.