Socket/ Prosthetic Eye Interventions
Reconstructing the eye appearance after removal of the eye: important considerations
In some situations, the eye has to be removed for medical reasons. Fortunately, with good reconstruction techniques, it is still possible to wear an ocular prosthesis and continue to live life normally. Motility may not be ideal and full but by and large, ocular prostheses are often well accepted and patients adapt to them well. When reconstructing the socket, the oculoplastic surgeon has to aim for good volume replacement, deep fornices and adequate soft tissue cover to avoid surface erosions. A good eyelid height is also important for good cosmesis. Depending on the pre-operative condition, it may be a challenge to achieve all these. On occasion, socket reconstruction may take place in stages to achieve the best results.
My ocular prosthesis is not fitting well. What should I do?
A good clinical examination by an experienced oculoplastic surgeon is crucial in determining what the problem at hand is. Quite often, shallowing of the fornices is seen to be the problem. Deepening the fornices will require surgery, with donor tissue taken from the lip. However, some cases are much more complex and may be difficult to address fully.
I have a lot of discharge. What could be the problem?
There are several possibilities for this: poor maintenance of the prosthesis ie the prosthesis has not been polished for many years, inability to close the eye fully due to shallow fornices and hypersensitivity to the prosthesis. A consultation with an oculoplastic surgeon will help to identify what is the main problem.