Ectropian Surgery With Tarsal Strip Procedure Not Working 3 Weeks Post-Op

I had lower eyelid surgery for an ectropian left eye with a tarsal strip procedure three weeks ago. My lower lid is not working. The surgeon says it takes patience and time. I am very fearful that the muscle will not return and if so, what will I do then?

Doctor Answers 6

Eyelid surgery is some oif the most delicate work in Plastic Surgery

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Return of muscle function could take 2-3months; be patient.  I haven't seen photos, but I could surmize that your doctor did a fine job, for,I might add, a very difficult and demanding problem. Let me know how you progress.WDM

Grand Junction Plastic Surgeon

Ectropion repair not working?

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  Your surgeon is right.  It's time to relax and give yourself time to heal,  Trust your doctor and try to be patient.  Almost certainly, the muscle function will return.

Lawrence Kass, MD
Saint Petersburg Oculoplastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 140 reviews


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It is hard to know what you mean by "not working" but it is very early from the date of your surgery and a lateral tarsal strip procedure is the most common treatment for ectropion of the lower eyelid. I would suggest continuing to follow closely with your surgeon. If you have a photo or video of the problem, that may help with specifics. Best of luck.

Gary Lelli, Jr., MD
New York Oculoplastic Surgeon

Ectropian repair

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When the lower lid tone is lost and the lid tends to pull away from the eye, ectropian repair with a tarsal strip procedure or canthoplasty will usually bring the lid up against the eye and improve the problem. It is hard to say what you mean by the lid 'not working' as the surgery should correct the lid position from the start. If you have irritation from the suture then use eye drops to lubricate. Patience will help.

Best of luck,


Peter E. Johnson, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 44 reviews

Problems after ectropion surgery

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I would concur with several of the other physicians that more time is likely needed. While I don't understand exactly what is meant by 'not working' it is certainly reasonable that additional swelling can exist 3 weeks after surgery. I would suggest close follow up with your physician and continued patience.

D.J. Verret, MD
Dallas Facial Plastic Surgeon

Ectropion Repair Not Working

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It would be helpful if you could:

1) Provide photos

2) Explain what you mean by "not working".  Is your eye tearing?  Do you have discomfort?  Does it roll out still?

At three weeks, I think you would realize the benefits of ectropion repair.

Have you discussed your concerns with your surgeon?  If so, you might seek a second opinion from a member of the American Society of Opthalmic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (ASOPRS).  You can find a member near you on their website.

Michael McCracken, MD
Lone Tree Oculoplastic Surgeon

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.