Reconstructive Eye Surgery
There are several reasons why a person may need reconstructive eye surgery. Perhaps they have suffered a trauma to the eye which has left scarring, disfigurement or a defect, or maybe they have had a tumour removed, have finished their follow-up treatment and are now ready to rebuild the eye structures to try and improve either the function, mechanics or the cosmetic appearance of the eye.
Whatever the reason for the surgery, it is important to let patients know that there are options available but equally important is to understand that it may not be possible to return the eye to the same condition it used to be in or that it will be fully functional after the treatment.
Reconstructive Surgery after Removal of a TumourFor may people, the need for reconstructive surgery after the removal of a tumour is not necessary as the surgeon has been able to address the cosmetic issues and retain the function of the eye during the initial procedure.
For those with fairly extensive tumours or those who have needed more than one procedure top remove the tumour or surrounding tissues the chances of needing reconstructive surgery are higher, but with the help of a highly trained and experienced professional, the options available to you and the chances of having a good end result are quite high.
Reconstructive Surgery Following an Accident or TraumaThis type of surgery tends to be more difficult than the previous form as the level of damage varies considerably between patients. For some a small foreign body may need removing or the eye may have been totally affected by a large instrument or debris that has the potential to leave the eye severely affected.
It is essential that the patient seeks help immediately after the event and does not attempt to remove any object that has penetrated the eye ball or has pierced the eyelid. This must be carried out under surgical and aseptic conditions to prevent infection from developing and also to minimise the possibility of damaging the eye further when the object is being removed. This can be difficult as a person’s natural reaction is to remove an object if it is stuck, but sometimes this can be more dangerous and do more harm than good.
The surgeon will do their best to minimise the chance of scarring after the procedure but their main priority is to preserve the sight and function of the eye and to deal with the cosmetics afterwards; after-all, any scarring can be re-addressed at a later date after the worst of the injury has been treated.
Other Conditions that may Require Reconstructive SurgeryIt is possible that some of the more common conditions such as an ingrown eyelash may require a certain degree of reconstructive surgery as the nature of the condition can mean that the eyelid begins to naturally turn inwards which will need surgical correction to restore the normal function of the eyelid.
It is also possible that the tissues and supportive underlying tendons around the eyelid can lose elasticity and cause the eyelids to droop over the eye and obstruct vision. In these cases surgery to minimise the eyelids may be needed.
Reconstructive eye and eyelid surgery can be a very important issue for the patient and can mean that for some, a degree of normalcy can be recovered following injury or trauma.