The lacrimal system produces and regulates your tears, so it’s essential for healthy eyes and clear eyesight. At Northeast Ophthalmic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeons, talented ophthalmologist Larissa Habib, MD, is a lacrimal system expert who can identify and treat your issue quickly and safely. Call the Fairfield, Connecticut, office or book your appointment using the provided link now.
Your lacrimal system regulates the tears in your eyes. A lacrimal gland produces and releases tears onto the surface of your eye. The tears drain through the complex lacrimal drainage system before exiting into your nasal cavity. The lacrimal system normally keeps your eye wet enough to be comfortable without overflowing.
Several issues may develop within your lacrimal system, including narrowed drainage channels, blocked drainage channels, and problems with healthy tear production. All of these issues can lead to tearing (excessive tear production or watery eyes).
Two common issues that can cause tearing are:
Nasolacrimal duct obstruction is a blocked tear duct. The condition can occur if your nasal passages don't properly ferry tears away from your eyes. Nasolacrimal duct obstruction can cause eye irritation, itching, and tearing.
Canalicular disorders are problems occurring within the lacrimal canaliculi (a short channel near the inner corner of the eyelid through which tears drain into the tear sac). Some of the most common canalicular disorders include canalicular stenosis (narrowing) and canaliculitis (infection). Both can cause serious tearing and other types of eye irritation.
Some other types of lacrimal system diseases and disorders include:
To determine the exact issue within your lacrimal system, Dr. Habib performs a comprehensive eye exam. She evaluates your eyes, looking closely at the way your tears drain. You may need diagnostic imaging tests to identify the source of your issues as well.
For a definitive diagnosis of some types of lacrimal disease, Dr. Habib performs a minimally invasive procedure called nasal endoscopy.
During this procedure, she views the inner workings of your lacrimal system through a miniature camera threaded through your nose. If you have a suspicious growth in or around your lacrimal system, Dr. Habib can remove part or all of that growth for lab testing.
Dr. Habib’s goal is to find the specific underlying cause of your tearing, allowing her to treat it in the most customized and precise way possible.
The key to treatment is addressing the underlying cause. If there is no obstruction noted, Dr. Habib can attempt conservative management through dry eye, blepharitis, or allergy treatment.
Surgical management is similarly directed at the root cause of the tearing. If the eyelids are not positioned correctly for optimal tear drainage, Dr. Habib may recommend eyelid reconstruction.
If there’s no obstruction in the drainage system, Dr. Habib can perform nasolacrimal probing and stent placement, or alternatively, a procedure to create a new passageway for tears to drain (dacryocystorhinostomy).
Schedule your appointment at Northeast Ophthalmic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeons through online booking or call the office today.