Tear Duct Disorder Surgery in Miami
Tear duct disorder, also known as nasolacrimal duct obstruction, is a condition that affects the drainage system of tears in the eyes. It occurs when there is a blockage or narrowing of the tear ducts, preventing tears from properly draining into the nose.
Symptoms of Tear Duct Obstruction
Symptoms of tear duct obstruction can vary depending on the severity of the blockage. Common signs and symptoms include excessive tearing, dry eyes, redness around the corner of the eye, swelling under the eyelids, crusting in the corners of the eyes, and mucus discharge from the eye. If left untreated, these symptoms can worsen over time and may cause eye infections or discomfort.
Common Causes of Nasolacrimal Duct Obstruction
The most common cause of a non-opening membrane at the end of the tear duct (known as the Valve of Hasner) is when the eyelid openings (puncta) fail to form properly. Another reason could be a narrow tear duct drainage system. Infection of the nasolacrimal duct or a nasal bone obstruction can also prevent the nasolacrimal duct from entering the nose.
Diagnosis and Treatment of Tear Duct Obstruction
In order to diagnose tear duct obstruction, your doctor will examine your eyes and perform a series of tests to determine the extent of the blockage. Treatments for this condition include using artificial tears or lubricating eye drops, using saline solution to irrigate the tear ducts, and enlarging punctua openings.
In more severe cases, surgery may be necessary to open up the nasolacrimal duct and allow tears to flow freely.
Surgeries for Tear Duct Disorder
Surgery is the most common treatment for tear duct disorder. It involves enlarging the punctua openings, located at the corner of each eye, to allow for better tear drainage and reduce symptoms. The surgical procedure typically requires between one and three months after surgery for effective tear drainage to resume.
In some cases, a balloon catheter dilation procedure may be used to open the blocked tear duct. This involves inserting a thin tube with a balloon into the tear drainage system, which is then inflated to widen and correct any blockages. Other surgical procedures may also include dilation probing or surgery on the lacrimal sac to facilitate tears to drain properly.
Kids and Tear Duct Disorder Surgery
In children, the cause of a blocked tear duct may be due to facial injury or birth defects. However, most cases can be treated with non-surgical options, such as using artificial tears or massage therapy to help open up the tear duct.
If non-invasive treatments are unsuccessful in treating the condition, a plastic surgery procedure may be recommended for your child. This procedure is designed to create a new opening in the tear duct and allow tears to flow freely through it.
It’s important to note that tears are an essential part of eye health, so it’s important to consult with your doctor if you suspect your child has blocked tear ducts. With proper diagnosis and treatment, most cases can be resolved quickly and effectively.
Symptoms in children of tear duct disorder
In addition to the common signs and symptoms previously mentioned, children may also experience:
- Eye irritation
- Blurred vision
- Sensitivity to light.
If left untreated, this condition can lead to further complications such as corneal ulcers or other vision problems. Therefore, it’s essential to seek medical attention if you suspect that your child has blocked tear ducts.
Your surgeon will inform you about the recovery process, which may vary depending on whether an external incision or endoscopic camera was used. The surgical area may be sore with bruising, but over-the-counter pain relievers should help.
Antibiotic ointment and medicated eye drops may be recommended. Patients undergoing endoscopic surgery can shower immediately with reduced bruising or swelling. Some may even return to work the next day.
You’ll have a follow-up appointment 7 to 10 days after surgery, with additional appointments as determined by your surgeon. Skin sutures are typically removed after a week. Telemedicine can be used for some post-operative care, depending on your circumstances.
Avoid blowing your nose for a week and refrain from strenuous activity during this time. The scar from the external incision will gradually fade over time. Stents are usually removed a few months after surgery.