Endoscopic dacryocystorhinostomy: reasons for failure

Eye (Lond). 2020 May;34(5):948-953. doi: 10.1038/s41433-019-0612-y. Epub 2019 Oct 8.


Objective: Endoscopic dacryocystorhinostomy (DCR) is a widely performed and safe procedure for the treatment of nasolacrimal duct obstruction manifested as epiphora or dacryocystitis. Current success rates are above 90%. Data on causes for failure of the procedure are sparse. We investigated the influence of several preoperative parameters on surgery outcome and to establish that parameters are linked with failure.

Methods: A retrospective analysis of the medical records of all consecutive patients who underwent endoscopic DCR in the Tel-Aviv Medical Center, a tertiary referral center, between January 2010 and August 2016 were retrospectively examined and data on the occurrence of surgical failure and reasons for failure were retrieved.

Results: A total of 165 patients (183 eyes) were included. The overall success rate for the surgery was 94.7%. The parameters that correlated significantly with failure were coexisting diabetes mellitus (P = 0.037), allergy to medications (P = 0.034), and prior ocular surgery (P = 0.043). There was no correlation between the surgical failure rates and facial trauma, previous nasal or lacrimal surgery, or the usage of a stent.

Conclusion: Endoscopic DCR is a safe and effective surgical procedure. Diabetes mellitus, allergies, and previous ocular surgery may lead to surgical failure. Patients with these risk factors should be aware of increased failure rates.

MeSH terms

  • Dacryocystorhinostomy*
  • Endoscopy
  • Humans
  • Lacrimal Duct Obstruction*
  • Nasolacrimal Duct* / surgery
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Treatment Outcome