Friday, January 21, 2011

Power of the Tapes - What to Do When the Waiting List is Long?

As the only oculoplastic surgeon in Sarawak, I have a long waiting list for patients who want their eyelid problems treated in Sarawak General Hospital, Kuching. I saw these 2 patients this morning who had malpositions of the lower eyelids. One had entropion and the other ectropion. In entropion, the lower eyelid rolls in causing the eyelashes to rub on the cornea. This condition is highly irritating to the eye and can cause scarring to the cornea resulting in reduced vision. In ectropion, the eyelid rolls out so that the eyelid is not apposed to the eyeball and this causes watering of the eyelid which also results in blurry vision.
Surgical treatment is the best option for both entropion and ectropion. However, because of the long waiting time I need to do something to reduce the patient's discomfort. The easiest way to do so is to use a clear sticking tape to either pull down the lower eyelid in entropion or to lift it up in ectropion as shown below.
The right lower eyelid has entropion ie. eyelid rolling in.

Transparent tape is used to pull down the eyelid.

This patient had a left lower eyelid ectropion
ie. the lid turning outward.

The clear tape is used to lift up the lower eyelid.

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