When you have a blocked tear duct, your tears can't drain normally, leaving you with a watery, irritated eye. The condition is caused by a partial or complete obstruction in the tear drainage system.A blocked tear duct is common in newborns. The condition usually gets better without any treatment during the first year of life. In adults a blocked tear duct may be due to an injury, an infection or rarely, a tumor.
A blocked tear duct is almost always correctable. Treatment depends on the cause of the blockage and the age of the affected person.
The surgery that's commonly used to treat blocked tear ducts is called dacryocystorhinostomy (DAK-ree-oh-sis-toe-rye-nohs-tuh-me). This procedure opens the passageway for tears to drain out your nose again. You'll be given a general anesthetic, or a local anesthetic if it's performed as an outpatient procedure.The steps in this procedure vary, depending on the exact location and extent of your blockage, as well as your surgeon's experience and preferences.External. With external dacryocystorhinostomy, your surgeon makes an incision on the side of your nose, close to the lacrimal sac. After connecting the lacrimal sac to your nasal cavity and placing a stent in the new passageway, the surgeon closes up the skin incision with a few stitches.
Endoscopic or endonasal. With this method, your surgeon uses a microscopic camera and other tiny instruments inserted through the nasal opening to your duct system. This method requires no incision so leaves no scar. But the success rates aren't as high as with the external procedure.