May 19, 2014
David Morrow MD Guest Sun Protection Expert on KMIR
Several conditions cause dry eye and chronic irritation. One of the most common is caused by prior cosmetic surgery. Some people experience dry and chronic irritation immediately after surgery. Other times, years go by before problems are noticed. The reason for the delay in symptoms is that over time, prior cosmetic surgery to the lower eyelids can cause the eyes to retract downward. Cosmetically, this causes a rounding of the eye and the loss of the eye’s more natural almond shape. Functionally, the rounding negatively impacts the position of the lower eye lid, which can lead to chronic dry eye, excessive tearing, chronic eye redness, irritation and blurred vision.
The condition is called Exposure Keratoconjunctivitis. It can be very painful and extremely annoying! Many patients believe they have no option but to use lubricating drops and ointments multiple times a day for the rest of their lives. However surgical treatment can correct the problem.
It involves two steps: 1) releasing scar tissue that has formed in the lower lid; and 2) elevating the cheek and eyelid. By elevating the cheek and eyelid, the lid is stabilized in a higher position to better protect the eye. This also restores a more natural almond shape to the eye.