What is epiblepharon?
Epiblepharon refers to the excessive skin fold along the eyelid margin that causes the adjacent eyelashes to be turned inwards and touch the cornea. This cases a variable level of discomfort with some children tolerating it better than others. Epiblepharon is more commonly seen in East Asian children. Usually, only the lower eyelid is affected. However, some children have both upper and lower lid epiblepharon.
Does my child require surgery? If so, when is a good time to undergo surgery?
Surgery is often recommended when the child experiences significant discomfort or when corneal abrasions are noted. Occasionally, neglected epiblepharon may cause increasing astigmatism. It is therefore good to know the child’s refraction when making the decision whether to undergo surgery. The surgery can be timed electively during school holidays with lubricant eyedrops and gel medications tiding the symptomatic child over till then.
Will there be a visible scar after surgery?
The surgical scar is often hidden in the area just below the lower eyelid margin. This subciliary area tends to heal well and most parents and children are not bothered by the fine line that mimics a natural skin line. In the upper eyelid, the surgical scar is hidden in the upper eyelid crease. In many cases where the child did not have a “double eyelid” prior to surgery, the family is often delighted to see one present after the surgery.