Watery eyes in children - Causes and management
Approximately 7% of infants are born with congenital obstruction of the tear drainage system in one or both eyes. This percentage is even higher in premature infants.
Initial treatment involves massaging the area around the affected lacrimal sac to force the tears down the nasolacrimal duct, and to push open the membrane causing the obstruction.
Dr Mavrikakis may also prescribe oral antibiotics, drops, or ointment. If massage does not relieve the tearing, additional treatments might be necessary.
Dr Mavrikakis may be able to open the blockage by inserting a thin metal probe through the punctum and down the nasolacrimal duct into the nose.
This outpatient procedure is performed under a general anesthetic.
For severe or recurrent cases, additional options include physically dilating the nasolacrimal duct with a balloon, propping the nasolacrimal duct open with a temporary silicone stent, or surgically creating an alternative drainage pathway for tears to pass into the nose (dacrocystorhinostomy).
Most patients experience resolution of their tearing and discharge after treatment is completed, with little if any postoperative discomfort.
Eyelid, Lacrimal & Orbital Diseases
Learn more about the disease you are interested in