Ingrown eyelashes are lashes that are turned in and rub against the front of the eye causing pain and irritation. These may be caused by conditions of the lid or lining of the lid e.g. Blepharitis – (inflammation of the eyelid). Other causes can be injuries to the lids caused by previous surgery or burns.
The eye may red, sore and watery. It can also affect your vision. If left untreated ulcers may occur.
Eyelashes can be pulled out usually by your optometrist. This however is not a permanent solution, as they will grow back and continue to cause irritation. Dr Lamb uses an Ellman Radiofrequency to permanently ablate lashes. This is a simple and effective method which can be performed under local anaesthetic. Drops are administered to numb the surface of the eye. Then local anaesthetic is injected into the area where the lashes are growing. This stings for around 20-30 seconds and will then be numb. A small gauge wire is introduced alongside the lash and down to the follicle, then a radiofrequency signal is delivered for about 1 second on the lowest power setting and this is enough to destroy the follicle.
Once the anaethetic has worn off continue normal duties.
More than one treatment is usually necessary as treatment can only be used for visible lashes. New lashes that are just below the surface may grow and require radiofrequency a few weeks after initial treatment. Lashes can sometimes grow in the same area and follow up treatment may be necessary. Some bruising, swelling and soreness can occur following removal and paracetamol may be required. If repeated treatment is necessary, you may be left with no lashes in certain areas.