Orbital Decompression: What to Expect
- Posted on: Sep 15 2018
Unusual bulging of the eyes is commonly referred to as proptosis. This condition is believed to develop secondary to a thyroid problem. In any situation, extensive protrusion of the eyes from the sockets can be emotionally disruptive. Many people with proptosis seek treatment to restore facial symmetry and improve physical comfort by reducing pressure on the eyes. Orbital decompression is a valuable surgical procedure through which patients may regain the ability to close their eyes fully and see with greater visual clarity. Understandably, a patient considering this procedure wants to know what to expect.
What is Involved in Orbital Decompression Surgery?
The primary objective of orbital decompression surgery is to create sufficient space within the orbital rim for the eyes to sit in a reasonable position. Historically, this has been achieved by refining the shape of the bony structure and, if necessary, removing or repositioning fatty tissue.
Beverly Hills oculoplastic surgeon and world-renowned expert in Thyroid Eye Disease (TED) treatment, Dr. Raymond Douglas, recognizes the similar goals that patients may have. However, his extensive experience affords him insight that leads to fully customized care in each scenario. Orbital decompression surgery does not involve a set technique, but a carefully-planned process that is built around each patient.
The surgical process begins with a thorough consultation to discuss the desired outcome and needs of the patient. Dr. Douglas treats patients from all around the world and routinely conducts the initial meeting via video. The information gained through the conversation is then used to develop a single-stage surgical event in which decompression may coincide with eyelid surgery and facial reshaping as needed to achieve the outcome discussed prior to surgery. In many cases of thyroid eye disease, patients must endure multiple surgeries to reach their desired result. The single-stage technique perfected by Dr. Douglas significantly reduces the potential need for additional surgery.
Because most cases of orbital decompression surgery involve hidden incisions, recovery may be more streamlined than a patient may imagine. Correcting multiple details in a single surgery reduces overall recovery time, as well as side effects such as double-vision. Still, patients may expect common surgical side-effects such as bruising and swelling to occur after surgery. Pain medication may be prescribed to manage comfort and should be taken as directed (don’t wait to see if pain develops). After 7 to 10 days, swelling and bruising should be significantly diminished. At this time, any non-absorbable sutures that were used during surgery will be removed.
Correcting proptosis related to thyroid eye disease is no different than obtaining surgery to repair a broken bone. Eye symmetry is necessary for aesthetic value and visual clarity. Patients who undergo customized orbital decompression surgery are pleased with the way they look and ultimately the way they feel.
Call our Beverly Hills office at (310) 657-4354 to discover why patients choose International Orbital Institute for orbital decompression surgery.
Posted in: Orbital Decompression Surgery