Doctor insights on:
How To Fix A Blocked Tear Duct
What should I expect during my recovery from tear duct reconstruction surgery? I am about to have surgery to fix a blocked tear duct in my right eye. How long is the recovery from this surgery? Will I take any medications after tear duct reconstruction, w
Depends: If in a child you can keep it clean and use massage against the nose to help it open. If in an adult, you need an ophthalmologist to determine whether the block is in the upper or lower system with different treatment for each. You cannot clean it out yourself but can massage to clear out accumulated debris until you get it medically fixed. ...Read more
Drops or surgery: In infants it will sometimes resolve spontaneously. In adults it may resolve with antibiotic drops but may require an office procedure like flushing the duct or may require a surgical procedure called a dacryocystorhinostomy (dcr). A true duct obstruction in an adult will not go away spontaneously and can lead to a serious infection of the soft tissues around the eye that can spread to the brain. ...Read more
Tearing: You need to be evaluated by an ophthalmologist especially one who deals with this all the time. It can be as simple as probing the equivalent of snaking out a blocked pipe like plumber or be as extensive to require exploratory surgery with possible bypass or reconstruction. This is a complex evaluation and can be a sign of other problems causing secondary signs. ...Read more
Tearing: A blocked tear duct is most commonly seen in children under the age of 12 months. It typically presents with a watery eye, occasionally with some mucus. Treatment involves massaging the region overlying the duct, mechanically or surgically opening the duct, or simply observing whether it will open on its own. In older individuals, it almost always requires surgery, if the symptoms are bothersome. ...Read more
Not well developed: Blocked tear duct is quite common in newborn babies, mostly because the duct is still quite small and well-formed yet. Usually after 6 montns or so as the duct enlarge and mature (more well-formed, it drains better and the blockage is resolved. Often, no treatment is needed. Some persistent cases may need a bit of probing to open it up. Hope this makes sense to you. Good luck. ...Read more
Try massage: Try massaging the inner corner of the lower eyelid to try to open the duct. Probing the duct may be needed by an ophthalmologist. ...Read more
LACRYMAL DUCT BLOCK: Commonly seen in newborns. Tear is produced by lacrymal glands situated at upper, outer part of the eyeball, flows over the eyeballs, then drains through a small opening at the nasal side of the lower eyelid to lacrymal sac, then through lacrymal (tear) duct to the nose. If the duct is blocked, tear accumulates in the sac, gets infected with swelling, redness and drainage of pus when pressed. ...Read more
I would not: As the blockage is often a "stone" and self removal could lead to damage of the duct i'd seek the help of an ophthalmologist. ...Read more
Epiphora: Blocked tear duct causes tthe tears to drain over the lid margin. Evaluation by an ophthalmologist can determine the cause and plan for treatmeent. ...Read more
Of all the related conditions, is blocked tear duct one of the better or worse ones to have, in terms of effects on health and well-being?
Depends on situation: This is common in newborns & given some time and growth the blockage can clear on its own as the duct becomes larger. If still blocked at 6m & unresponsive to simple measures, an ophthalmologist may need to probe the duct & clear the blockage. One simple measure involves rolling the tip of the finger over the inner corner of the eye over the tear sac which may push any blockage down the duct. ...Read more
Depends on cause: In children, the cause is often a small membrane that hasn't yet broken. This can be opened through a probing procedure, normally done under general anesthesia. In adults, there are many different types of blockages. Some require probing and stenting while others require surgery. Dacryocystorhinostomy (dcr) surgery is often performed to bypass the lacrimal duct. ...Read more
Possibly: If the blocked tear duct results in tearing down your cheek, you may need surgery. If the blocked tear duct results in infections, you may need surgery. See eye doctor forst and will probably recommend an antibiotic drop and warm compresses to see if it opens. Then might try to squirt water into the duct in the office to see if actually blocked. ...Read more
Go see ophth: Go see ophthalmologist.Get a more detailed answer ›
Tear sac massage: If you roll the tip of your finger over the inner corner of the eye, nose to cheek, this presses on the tear sac located just beneath the skin. Over time this can push enough water pressure through the tear duct to clear small amounts of debris that clog it. If a kid stays blocked past a year of age the probing under anesthesia can push the blockage out & eliminate the problem. ...Read more
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