Entropion and Ectropion

  Entropion is inversion (rolling in) and ectropion is eversion (rolling out) of the eye lids. These conditions are often hereditary and prevail in certain breeds.

Entropion may involve different segments of the eye lid. The in-rolling of the eye lid causes constant irritation, tearing, squinting and discomfort due to irritation of the cornea by the hair of the inverted eye lid. Pussy eye discharge, corneal ulceration, darkening and rupture are seen in more severe cases. 

The condition is common in brachycephalic (flat face) breeds such as Persian cats, bulldogs, pugs, shar peys, toy breeds (poodle and Yorkshire terrier), and giant breeds (Mastiff, St. Bernard, and Newfoundland). Entropion is usually diagnosed at an early age. In some instances, Entropion can be secondary to continuous squinting (blepharospasm) due to chronic irritation, inflammation and other primary conditions.           

Ectropion is rare in cats, but fairly common in dogs. Sporting breeds (spaniels, hounds, and retrievers), giant breeds and any breed with loose facial skin (especially bloodhounds) are predisposed to the condition.  

The eversion of the eye lid exposes the eye to air, outside irritants and infections. Tearing, facial staining, thick discharge and eye globe damage are common signs. Other diseases may cause functional entropion and can be diagnosed by additional testing. 

Primary entropion and ectropion are treated by corrective surgery that re-modulates the shape of the eye lid.


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