Post-external dacryocystorhinostomy lagophthalmos

Int Ophthalmol. 2015 Jun;35(3):375-9. doi: 10.1007/s10792-014-9957-1. Epub 2014 Jun 7.


To describe lagophthalmos and eyelid closure abnormality after external dacryocystorhinostomy (DCR). A retrospective review of medical records and postoperative photographs of 79 patients who underwent external DCR for nasolacrimal duct obstruction and developed eyelid closure abnormality and lagophthalmos with or without exposure keratopathy was conducted. Collected data included age, sex, indication for surgery, laterality, length and type of incision, length of follow-up duration, presence of punctate epithelial keratopathy, and time for resolution of eyelid closure abnormalities. Twenty-seven patients with 28 external dacryocystorhinostomy had postoperative eyelid closure abnormalities. Male to female ratio was 1:6. The mean age was 40.1 years (range 9-80 years). All surgeries were performed through diagonal skin incision. Lagophthalmos involving the medial third of the palpebral fissure was noticed in 28.6 % of cases. All patients had hypometric blink mainly of the upper eyelid. One patient had punctate epithelial keratopathy. Resolution of lagophthalmos was noticed over a period of 1-5 weeks with an average of 3 weeks. None of the patients continued to have residual hypometric blink or punctate keratopathy at the last follow-up time. The mean follow-up period was 4.2 months (range 3-6 months). Eyelid closure abnormality and lagophthalmos after external DCR are underestimated problems. Spontaneous resolution is seen in all cases weeks to months after surgery.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Child
  • Dacryocystorhinostomy / adverse effects*
  • Eyelid Diseases / etiology*
  • Facial Nerve Injuries / etiology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lacrimal Duct Obstruction
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Muscle Weakness / etiology
  • Nasolacrimal Duct / surgery*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Young Adult