Most Common Eye Operations

Glaucoma (Cataracts)

Glaucoma is an eye disease that causes the lens to cloud and is the most common cause of blindness. Nevertheless, 90% of all cases are due to cataracts that appear with age. Two different surgical techniques exist today to remove cloudy lens from an eye. In phacoemulsification, which is the more frequently performed operation, a small incision is made in the lens capsule and the hardened lens nucleus is liquefied with ultrasound and aspirated. Then an artificial lens is inserted. Surgery usually lasts 20 minutes, with 90% of patients reporting improved vision. The risks are generally low. In rare cases the inner eye becomes inflamed or there is retinal detachment. However, 20-30% of patients come down after treatment with so-called “post glaucoma”, a clouding of the lens capsule in which the artificial lens was inserted. This capsule opacification (fibrosis) forms as the incision wound heals and can be treated with laser surgery at an outpatient clinic.

Lacrimal Duct Surgery

Tears are produced by the lacrimal gland, which is located laterally under the upper eyelid. The tear fluid flows in the inner eyelid through the lacrimal punctum and lacrimal duct. (Eyelid movement and lid pumping motion as well as the tear ducts). The tear fluid forms a film in the eye that is moistened as the eye blinks, protecting the delicate transparent cornea.
A narrowing of the tear ducts is known as stenosis, which can be caused by inflammation, scarring, tumors or stones. The narrowed duct can be reopened with an endoscopic laser, cannula or balloon (recanalization). Such operations are low risk. If the lacrimal sac becomes totally constricted, a connection can be established from the lacrimal sac to the nasal mucous membrane. Finally, a thin silicone tube is inserted into the lacrimal duct, where it remains for about three months to prevent subsequent constriction. The surgical procedure is especially low risk.

Eyelid Surgery

Eyelids moisten the eyes and protect them. But if an eyelid is incorrectly positioned, its functionality is affected. The field of vision can become limited by excess eyelid skin or sagging eyelid muscles and their tendons. There are also a variety of congenital eyelid malpositions and malformations. Eyelid surgery aims to restore physiological lid function and achieve a cosmetically satisfactory result.It involves surgical intervention in the eyelid skin and muscles to remedy the problem, such as removing or tightening excess skin. These days eyelid surgery often plays a role in cosmetic surgery, too, in order to rejuvenate and make the area around the eyes look younger.

Tumor Removal

Both benign and malignant tumors can also form on the eye. Depending on the type and location of the tumor, they should be removed surgically. For example, basal cell carcinoma is a frequent tumor found on the eyelids. Although this form very rarely produce secondary tumors or metastasize, it can continue to grow and infiltrate into the eyeball and bone. Even melanomas, sarcomas and other types of tumors can occur in the eye. Depending on the findings, different steps need to be taken. These range from removing a hemangioma with a laser to surgical removal of tumor tissue and irradiation of the affected tissue. If the retina and choroid are affected, the eyeball may even have to be removed.

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