Abnormal tearing, referred to as Epiphora, may result from a blockage in the lacrimal drainage system. When the tube that drains tears from the eye to the nose is obstructed, the stagnation of fluid presents a risk for recurrent infection. To resolve excessive tearing and minimize the risk of future infection, Dr. Raymond Douglas may recommend a dacryocystorhinostomy.
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What is a dacryocystorhinostomy?
Dacryocystorhinostomy surgery, or DCR, is a procedure in which a new tear duct is created to allow fluid to pass from the eye to the nose. The procedure may be performed externally or endoscopically. At the International Orbital Institute in Beverly Hills, Dr. Douglas uses an endoscopic technique to treat a blocked tear duct. When considering a DCR, be sure to find a surgeon with a lot of experience in this surgery, like Dr. Douglas, as it is complex and within very delicate anatomy.
Who is a good candidate for a DCR?
DCR is performed to resolve a confirmed blockage in a tear duct. Obstruction can lead to symptoms such as persistent eye irritation, excess tearing or mucus discharge from the eye, swelling or tenderness around the eye, and recurrent infection. Dacryocystorhinostomy isn’t necessary for every circumstance of tear duct blockage and may be suggested after conservative therapies such as antibiotics, warm compresses, and gentle eye massage have failed to achieve lasting improvement.
To determine if you are a good candidate for endoscopic DCR treatment, Dr. Douglas will perform a careful examination of your nasal anatomy as well as your tear drainage system. This procedure may not be suited for every person, such as individuals with a deviated septum.
How is the DCR procedure performed?
Endoscopic DCR is an outpatient procedure that may be performed under general or local anesthesia. Local anesthesia numbs nerve endings in the nasal cavity and also constricts blood vessels to minimize bleeding and post-operative swelling. Once numbing has occurred, a tiny instrument (endoscope) with a camera on the end is inserted through the nose. The endoscope bypasses the blocked duct and facilitates the placement of a silicone stent as a new drainage duct.
DCR surgery typically takes no more than an hour. The stent remains in place for approximately 3 months before it is removed in the office. This is usually painless. When the stent is present, some patients continue to notice some degree of tearing. However, this should resolve once the stent is removed.
What are the risks of a dacryocystorhinostomy?
The risks of endoscopic dacryocystorhinostomy are minimal. Potential complications include excessive bleeding, infection, and displacement of the stent. There is also a chance that the procedure will not achieve the desired improvement. Risks vary based on a patient’s age, general health, and DCR technique (endoscopic vs. external). During our consultation, we will discuss the risks that apply to you.
Schedule Your DCR Consultation Today!
Obtain the care that you need to stop excessive tearing related to a blocked lacrimal system. Contact our office in Beverly Hills to schedule your consultation with Dr. Raymond Douglas.