What is the prognosis of dacryocystitis following surgical intervention?

Updated: Oct 08, 2019
  • Author: Grant D Gilliland, MD; Chief Editor: Edsel Ing, MD, MPH, FRCSC  more...
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The success rate of external dacryocystorhinostomy has traditionally been regarded as approximately 95%. [2]

Premature stent loss (prior to 2 months in one study [3] ) resulted in a success rate of 90%.

Intranasal dacryocystorhinostomy has a slightly lower success rate, presumably due to the inability to create as large an ostium.

Laser-assisted dacryocystorhinostomy is promising in that less morbidity is seen with the procedure; however, the success rate appears to be approximately 80-85%.

The above figures should be compared with Huang's 2014 meta-analysis, which reported only 87% anatomic patency with external and endonasal dacryocystorhinostomy. [4] Furthermore, the meta-analysis indicates, "true functional patency and relief of symptoms as a definition of success may be ideal, but in clinical practice, achieving anatomical patency has often been the aim and thus is a realistic reflection of results of current practice."

Balloon dacryoplasty is also a useful procedure in select patients and in patients who fail primary dacryocystorhinostomy. The author offers balloon dacryoplasty to patients with focal partial stenosis.

The conjunctival flora has been shown to normalize a few weeks after dacryocystorhinostomy. [5]

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