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Welcome to Blocked Tear Duct Surgery for Adults. My name is George Parker, and I’ve created this website from my personal experience of treatment for watery eye (epiphora), and the medical mismanagement I suffered from an attempt to fix it. It’s a website for adults with epiphora and those whom have had surgery or other interventions for this condition. It’s a place to share your experiences and learn from others.
The website is also for medical professionals, especially oculoplastic surgeons—to make them more aware of the frustration their so-called ‘cured’ patients feel when risks become reality. Many complex problems arise as a result of this procedure, including (with the worst kind of irony) severe and painful dry eye, and it seems that surgeons are unwilling to take these risks seriously.
I am advocating against the irresponsible overuse of DCR (dacryocystorhinostomy) surgery. It has caused me many problems, including severe dry eye and air regurgitation upon breathing and speaking (which I will discuss in detail later). I was told very little about the operative procedure and complications. According to those I’ve consulted, the damage to my eye drainage system is permanent and irreversible. I want to save you from the same fate—or, if you’ve already gone through the surgery and have problems, to let you know that you are not alone.
By profession I am a naturopath and a massage therapist, and have been practicing various alternative and complementary therapies for the past twenty years. I am educated—I studied at the Endeavour College of Natural Health—well read, and very proactive and hands-on in terms of my own health. Yet, here I am—a victim of a hasty and unnecessary surgery. How did this happen, what could have been done to prevent it, and what can be done to help those affected? These are the questions we’ll investigate here.
I totally agree with unnecessary medical intervention urging; many older doctors don’t retire because of their love of their practice – its because they fear legal charges relating to malpractice – and have to work to keep paying their insurance premiums – in case their maladroit practice gets them into court!!
What’s up to every one, the contents existing at this web site are truly remarkable for people knowledge, well, keep up the nice work fellows.
I have stumbled upon your blog by reading another blog. Thank you so much for making an effort to create and maintain this blog. It makes me feel better just from realizing that I am not alone with my quest for common sense and pragmatic approach for this annoying problem. I have blocked tear ducks in both of my eyes and and have had an initial surgery scheduled a couple of month ago. Luckily (a silver lining?!), I was not admitted to this surgery due to an untreated hypertension. Now, that my hypertension is under control, I have rescheduled the surgery. Upon the caring insistence from my husband, I have been doing an extensive research online from the fellow “sufferers” and within the first couple of hours found so many mentioned concerns, issues, and discomforts that it made me seriouslu rethink this surgery and the benefirts from having it. I am diving right into your blog. THANK YOU!!!
Irina…did you find a solution?
I have too much tear in both an eye as that I got a block tear conduct and by don’t know what happen to cause it , after I check from doctor and now the doctor advise that I need to surgery, but I do not want to surgery. Both side of eye ‘s tear conduct has been block , as the right side was serious one.
special at windy, too cold , talking with someone, while that it will appear to my an eye. Can do anything eg. message or….. to fixed it ?!! make tear conduct back to normal .
It’s difficult to understand your English. You were probably offered a DCR surgery. Yes, other alternatives exist and they should always be offered, but never are. For just a tearing eye, it seems they have to cut you open and drill through your bone, ignoring the life long effects it may have. Where is the doctors creed, “First do no harm”?
It’s difficult to find a surgeon to use a non-invasive technique. I am referring to NO SURGERY as you want and congratulations for being vigilant on this. You can try hot compresses, massage the tear sac and pushing extra fluid out of it. If it’s infected you may purchase antibiotic drops over the counter. Meanwhile try your best to find a surgeon who’ll attempt to probe or use the alternative solutions shown in my website here. Good luck!
Unfortunately, I had a bad experience myself. I had my surgery almost 3 years ago. I had relief for less than a year and then the headaches came back with a vengeance. Then came the watery eyes. About 2 months ago, it was getting worse. I went to clean out my nose and pulled, what felt to be a tube, and I felt the corner of my eye sink it. My eye started swelling and it had a constant dischage. I went to the ER and was informed that my tube was supposed to taken out 3 years ago. Went back to my eye surgeon and he was also shocked and told me that I have a bacterial infection due to that tube being in so long. I was livid! Now they have scheduled surgery to take it out. Removal of the tube would have been done in office but, unfortunately, mine has become attatched to surrounding tissues. Have you ever heard of such nonsense?
Hi, I’m 34 years old and have had watery eyes for 1 year now. I have obstructed canaliculi. I have had the “3 snip” surgery but that did not fix the problem. All my 4 tear ducts are closed shut. I have been told that I need “Lester jones tubes” on both eyes. (Lester jones tubes are glass tubes). I refused the surgery but my eyes are always watering 🙁 I don’t know what to do. The doctor has dilated my tear ducts a few times but they keep closing again. Help!!!! Is there anything else I can do? I just want my own tear ducts to work.
Your problem seems very complicated. To have an eye doctor dilate the canaliculi is a miracle in itself! Your body is rejecting the procedure and closing up again. The human body is so complex and heals in different ways, perhaps your body heals too quickly? Regardless, there may not be much else available other than the lester jones tubes. Most of the blockages that occur with tearing eye occur down lower at the nasolacrimal duct so it’s unfortunate your blockage is up further.
Sorry I couldn’t be much more help. Continue searching, spend time researching the internet for other options.
Best of luck.
I have exactly the same problem-how are your eyes now? Did anything work??
Hi everyone! As I mentioned above, I refused to have the LesterJones tubes surgery but my watery eyes were affecting my vision (blurred vision due to tears). In 2015 I decided to have the Lester Jones tube surgery, everything went well, I was black and blue from the surgery but not in pain. Lester Jones tubes definitely need maintenance, which I will write about a bit later on. I have Jones tubes in both eyes. In 2016 my right eye tube dislodged, the tube went in completely and the opening in the inner corner of my eye closed, I had to have another surgery to remove the old tube from my nose and a new, bigger tube was placed. In 2017 the same thing happened to my left eye and had to have another surgery. January of this year my left eye tube popped out and I had another surgery. Between 2015 to 2018 I’ve had 4 Jones tube surgeries. The number one reported complication/problem with the Jones tubes is dislodgement of the tubes. My tubes get blocked frequently and the only way to unblock them is to hold my nose and blow a few times, I have to do this several times a day. I also have to do the ‘sniff test’ to make sure my tubes are not blocked and working properly. I check my tubes every morning and make sure that they’re sitting in the right position as sometimes it can slightly come out or go in. I used 2 different eye drops, one is for redness and inflammation and the other one is for dry eyes. Sometimes I wake up with red, sore inflamed eyes and this is because my eyes are reacting to the foreign object (tubes). I have to remember to close my eyes or hold the tubes, every time I sneeze or blow my nose otherwise the tubes can pop out, and the list goes on….. The surgeries have definitely taken a toll on my eyes, I now have dark under eye circles and sunken, tired looking eyes which I didn’t have before the surgeries. I have a slight dropping of my left upper eyelid which I did not have before the surgeries! The tubes work well when looked after. My ophthalmologist is Dr Alan Mcnab who’s the head of the doctors at the Eye and ear hospital in Victoria. I couldn’t have found a better doctor in Victoria than Dr Mcnab but unfortunately Jones tubes come with a few complications. ☺
I had lasik surgery in February and my right eye has been watering since. I am told that it is not related…they tell me it is age. I’m 55 and have never had a problem like this. They tried flushing it with the dye test…concluded it was a blocked tear duct and. DCR surgery is needed. I have an appointment on August 19th but have a lot of anxiety about it…especially after finding your blog which I must thank you for. I’m just getting so tired of tears dripping down my face..:(
Hi Deb, LASIK is more likely to induce DRY EYE because it cuts through nerves in the cornea. It’s highly unlikely to cause a weeping eye (epiphora) unless somehow, the surgery caused inflammation into the naso-lacrimal duct and thus a blockage has occurred. Or could it really be a coincidence? Could it be age related and it occurred simultaneously during LASIK surgery? Could it be ‘dry eye’ and the watering is simply ‘reflex tearing’?
Regardless, you have an annoying weeping eye and want it to stop. I know the feeling! Firstly, the general treatment protocol is to use anti-inflammatory drops for 6 months in an attempt to clear the blockage. However, during the process I’d want to know ‘exactly’ where the blockage is and demand a ‘macrodacrocystogram’.
Anxiety can be a useful emotion. It’s anticipating something may harm us in the near future and indeed, DCR could do more harm than good. Go with your feelings, if you are hesitant about the surgery, please don’t go through with it. I personally recommend you do not have a DCR and would prefer you exercise a bit more patience whilst you analyze your options more closely.
Please let us know what you decide to do.
What a TRIAL to have to go through!! And immense gratitude for having to both have gone through this, and take your time to Help others. You’re probably saving a lot of people from suffering! Didn’t realize you’re so distant when I left my #. (We could Skype if you chose to contact). Also, I’m still interested in trying to get a ‘first snip,’ though u feel this is largely the cause of your dry eye? It’s just the top surface is compromised (open but flat), and a snip would bring it to a more circular way. The doc was against when he went in with the syringe and found the hole had shifted over (due to temporary tubes placed in ducts that may have migrated them over) and that the opening is actually sideways. And lastly, my heart goes out to everyone here and in the world who suffers from this very misunderstood condition. There ought be support groups for dry eye/over watery sufferers! God Bless! You’re a hero in my book
Thank-you Havad. Indeed, the trials and tribulations continue. I’ve had both lower punctum’s cauterized on Oct 3. Then habitually blocked the upper punctum with my thumb on the DCR eye (to avoid the shakey sensation) to blow my nose and forgot I had the lower puncta cauterized. Did the harsh blow push the cauterized tissue apart again (which was done 5 days previously) ?? There was a stitch placed in the punctum but what about the cauterized tissue below the stitch. And the drama continues. So does my mission to warn people against the barbaric DCR surgery.
I’m happy to speak with you on skype Ben. It will have to wait until after the 18 October.
As I’ve explained in your previous post I am confused about your condition and ask you to kindly explain it again in a more detailed and specific way. At this stage it’s difficult to advise on something I do not understand.
Keep in touch
First, I am so glad to have found your site! My daughter had dacrocystitis and was diagnosed with a blockage of the lacrimal duct, and thus recommended for DCR. I was shocked at the rush to surgery without any further investigation as to the location and severity of the blockage. After two weeks of antibiotics, she looks and feels fine, and her eye is not watery so the blockage can’t be that bad! She is 22 years old, and they have her convinced that the problem will reoccur whenever she gets sick or run down, so she is panicking and thinking about just doing the surgery. I want to advise her on better diagnostic procedures and potential remedial procedures before resorting to surgery. What would you advise please!!
Hi Cynthia! You are correct be concerned about the rush to surgery. Did they do a saline rinse via needle that goes into the lower puncta in an attempt to push the block through? If they didn’t, and simply recommended DCR based on dacrocystitis then not only is that going against the doctors creed of “First do no harm”, it’s also negligent, harmful and dangerous. Perhaps the surgeon is wanting to hurry onto the next patient? so DCR will fix the problem ‘quickly’? Never mind the complications!!
Antiobiotic drops should be the first line treatment before “surgery” (which should be the LAST option). I recall using antibiotic drops whilst I had epiphora and whilst I didn’t have dacrocystitis it certainly helped with the tearing to some degree. The surgeon is advising the infection will return because the ’cause’ of the problem remains – the blockage. They say DCR is the only way to remove it. I say “Guff”. In fact, it may only be a “partial” blockage and since they didn’t bother doing any investigations you don’t know. On the chance of a partial blockage, balloon dilatation has a higher success rate in adults. They won’t want to use balloon dilatation on your daughter, fine, tell them you’ll find someone who will!!
I advise you to find another, more conservative eye surgeon with an open mind. Tell your daughter an X-ray of her blockage needs to be performed (Macrodacrocystogram) to investigate exactly the location of the blockage and it’s severity. Keep up with the antibiotics and eventually stop them. If the dacrocystitis returns then we need to find out exactly where the block is and move towards eliminating it. This is the order to proceed:
1. Saline irrigation
3. Balloon dilatation
5. Combination of balloon dilatation and stenting.
If they are not successful, then an “improvement” in symptoms maybe good enough. It’s only after exhausting all these treatments would one consider DCR. But you can see there are definitely far safer and easier options before DCR.
A 22 yr old wants it done NOW and maybe impatient so I do sympathize with you there. Good luck and please keep us informed.
Thank you all for your comments: I was beginning to think I was alone with this stupid issue. I have been having this issue for about 2 years now and Im so tired of holding tissue in my hands 24/7..if i dont I would have to redo my makeup. Very annoying!! I have found a doctor who suggested the surgery by first cutting the area right Outside of my eye first, then going into unblock my tearducts. Well I have kyloid type skin which means I might just scar up right after the surgery..NO CAN DO!!
so, I guess Im left with holding my tissue 24/7..I have to say i have been taking sinus meds and it drys me out but NOT all day..I hate taking pills but it helps a little..
Hi Deborah, did your eye doctor give you the option of an Endoscopic DCR? It would be a better option if you are prone to keyloid scars. However, you could also scar at the “nasal opening” made during the endoscopic procedure and that could close the opening. It’d seem logical that no incision should be involved in your intervention. Rather, explore the non surgical options mentioned on this website.
hi George my name is swetha …I am now 28 year old . from past two year my left eye keeps watering,,, I consulted many doctors but all suggests for surgery .. but one doctor advice for laser surgeon I am confused but iam irritated by eye watering… plz do advice me …
Hi Swetha, sorry to hear you have to go through this. Most doctors certainly will be very quick at recommending DCR surgery. The ‘laser’ technique is not much different unfortunately. I strongly advice against it and urge you to find a doctor who will perform the gentle non-surgical techniques on you. Please refer to my website section on “alternatives to DCR”. Good luck!
I had a DCR performed on my right eye on recommendation of 2 eye doctors, The post surgery was hard as my surgeon said I bled alot during surgery, so he went from internal ( endonasal)which we both agreed on to external DCR due to excessive bleeding so I woke up with a horrible scar thai is still very much visible after 2 months.And on top of all my problems, my eye never even once stopped tearing. The stent is out and the tearing and infections resumed even worse than before.
My doctor ( surgeon) proposed repeating the surgey. Would he do the same if the patient was a member of his family. I am in deep despair.I Lost my job, can not drive because of the constant tearing and do not dare even applying for another job.Should surgeons be paid for ruining our lives when even heart surgeries are performed successfully. Are there any other alternatives do DCR surgeries. Even though this is not a difficult surgery, nevertheless, it involves one ‘s sight and surgeons should bear the consequences in case of malpractice, but how can we know what goes on in the OR when nobody would answer your questions. Even my eye doctor did not call me back after reading the report.Can anyone ,please advise me on what to do.I feel so alone and lost in my situation.
Fabienne I am deeply sorry you’ve been through this terrible experience especially since it’s your precious eye. Most surgeons are quick to jump in and recommend DCR and for the most part, it seems to work out okay. They call the rest of us “rare cases” and in reality there’s not much they can do to rectify the complications. So is your main concern that your right eye is still tearing and you want to avoid having a second DCR? and the visible scar?
Yes there are alternatives and if your feelings are strong enough to avoid a DCR for the less complicated procedures your eye doctor should listen to you. A second DCR may not work either, but a stent or balloon dilatation might work very well or at least provide less tearing. I’d suggest changing doctors. Keep persisting and you’ll find a sympathetic doctor who’ll take your feelings and concerns into consideration. There certainly are very good doctors out there if you can locate them.
The scar will eventually become less noticeable to a point it won’t bother you anymore. Two months is not enough for complete healing, it will improve 🙂
Please keep persisting, and your efforts will see a positive end to this nightmare and you can gain our job back, or even find a better job. Sometimes a positive situation is born out of a negative one. Find that glimmer of hope and walk towards it by persisting with treatment. I’d also suggest you obtain short term counselling to help you overcome the emotional ordeal from it to give you the strength to deal with what’s ahead. Are you strong enough now? Please make the right decisions and you’ll be absolutely fine.
What about punctoplasty. My dr made it sound like a simple procedure, just an hour and no down time. I have had dry eye and now over watering eyes and infections since 2011. We tried irrigation, probing, and eye plugs but no help. Are there any risks? I am 60 yrs old and tired of not being able to read properly with all the watering. Five yrs is long enough. I even tried vedic remedies w no change. I want to do punctoplasty but the video on u tube freaked me out. Your thoughts? Marcia
I’d need more information to comment. if you’ve had dry eyes you don’t want to have your punctum’s dilated, it will cause the tears to drain through faster and make your eyes drier.
So now they are tearing? You’ve gone from dry eyes to tearing eyes? Is that correct? What could have caused that is the following scenario: The dryness has decreased the moisture along the naso-lacrimal duct causing it to “block” thus causing tearing. If that’s what’s occurred, then a punctoplasty is not going to do anything at all to benefit you.
Rather, obtain more answers regarding what’s causing the problem. Demand a marcodacrocystogram to check where the blockage is. What’s causing the tearing? Doesn’t it make sense to find the cause, then fix that?
Let us know how you go. Thank-you
Has anyone had floaters after DCR and did they clear up?
I had a Jones tube inserted after a failed DCR. I am VERY happy with the Jones tube. I have had no complications, the procedure was done quickly followed by very little pain. I took 2 Ibuprofen the first day, one the second day, and that’s all I needed. I did have a little bruising around the eye for a few days, but that’s all. It has been four weeks, and no tearing. I rarely sense the tube – only when I move my eye from one side to the other quickly, and the Dr. said that will disappear, too. I did not have any problems with my DCR, either, except that because I had so much scar tissue by letting the blockage go so long, and possibly a previous car accident, that to repeat it would have been futile. I do a saline sinus rinse in the morning and before I go to bed, and that keeps my nose clear so I don’t have to blow it during the day. Just thought anyone facing this might want to know. I read a positive blog response before I had mine done, and it really encouraged me.
Thank-you for writing about your experience Bette. There’s been a few recent inquiries about the Lester Jones Tube and concerns about it’s maintanence. Whilst I suggest it’s the absolute last resort, for those who have no choice your positive experience will be very reassuring for those who may require it.
I read your blog on how you were doing after your Jones Tube was put in. My husband has one eye and it is full of water all the time. Everything and I mean everything has been done to get the excessive water out. With him having no other option, he is leaning toward the Jones Tube. I am afraid of something happening and him losing his only eye. He drives and does ordinary things but this water drives him crazy. How are you doing now and where are the positive reviews that you found where this procedure actually helped someone. He is 68 years old. Thanks for taking your time to write us.
Josie Jarratt wife of 48 years
Hugh Jarratt husband with one eye and it is excessively watering after numerous trys to fix it-this is last thing Vanderbilt has to offer
Hi Josie, thank-you for writing.
CLARIFICATION OF A JONES TUBE
Terms and phrases regarding surgery and watery eye can often get confusing and scrambled up. A ‘Jones Tube’ is referred to as a ‘Lester Jones Tube’, and by following the description on that website along with referring to an anatomical image of the lacrimal system, you’ll get an idea where a Jones Tube is indicated.
An image such as the one on my blog, ‘Five Years On’ will show you there is a lower and upper part to the lacrimal system. The upper system is where the tears drain directly from the eye, into the tiny ‘punctae’, then into the canaliculus. From the canaliculus, the tears meet with the tear/lacrimal sac. Then the tears continue their journey from the lacrimal sac through the “Naso-lacrimal duct” and finally into the nose.
WHERE EXACTLY IS THE BLOCKAGE LOCATED?
Do you know what part of the lacrimal system your husband has the blockage that’s causing his tearing? Within my website I mention a test known as the macro-dacryocystogram that will show specifically where the blockage is located. In a majority of epiphora cases, the block is located in the lower, Naso-lacrimal duct. In these cases, most oculoplastic surgeons recommend DCR surgery. Whereas, I challenge them and recommend they do NOT use DCR as first line treatment. It seems such an attitude is hypocrital to the doctors creed of, ‘First do no harm’. So the lesser invasive and conservative treatments should always come first. Unfortunately, eye surgeons want to go in for the deep and use DCR.
THE ONLY TIME A JONES TUBE IS NECESSARY
When a blockage is located in the UPPER lacrimal system, it is located in the canaliculus. Such a location for a blockage a surgeon will not recommend DCR, but rather a Lester Jones Tube.
My blockage that caused epiphora was located in the lower ‘Naso-lacrimal duct’. So I never required a Jones Tube.
In Bette Schumann’s case, I am assuming the DCR failed because the surgeon (like most of them) went ahead with DCR without doing a macro-dacryocystogram to locate where the blockage is. They assume because most blockages occur in the lower lacrimal system (the Naso-lacrimal duct), then they will just by-pass the macro-dacryocystogram because if 90% of blockages occur in the lower duct, then why bother with the other 10%? …. Can you see the logic in that? There is NO logic at all, the other 10% of cases DO occur, they DO matter and they SHOULD check EVERY person whom presents with epiphora with a macro-dacryocystogram. But they DO NOT and these are the people whom we trust our delicate eyes with.
I’m assuming this is what occurred with Bette Schumann. Her surgeon didn’t perform a macro-dacryocystogram and she was 10% of the cases where the blockage was located in the upper lacrimal system (the canaliculus). On that basis, a DCR cannot work at all, because DCR surgery only works for blockages in the lower Naso-lacrimal duct. So the surgery was doomed from the start.
So finally, with Bette Schumann, I’m assuming the same surgeon or someone different did further investigation to diagnose the failure. They found the blockage in the upper lacrimal duct (canaliculus) and was able to recommend the appropriate treatment for the specific diagnosis! Something that should have been done at the beginning!!
IS JONES TUBING APPROPRIATE FOR YOUR HUSBAND?
Again, it depends if he is the minority of patients who has a blockage in the upper lacrimal system. And even if he does, they should still use conservative treatments in an attempt to ‘push’ or ‘dislodge’ the occlusion. Jones Tubing should only be a last resort for a ‘canaliculus’ that is actually damaged.
WHERE ARE THE POSITIVE REVIEWS?
I prefer to use solid scientific studies from journals published in platforms such as http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed. It’s more accurate than relying on a few positive reviews from website visitors. Positive reviews are usually done to compare ‘physical products’, for example, products purchased on http://www.amazon.com and you’ll find thousands of client reviews. However, when it comes to surgery, we are dealing with something that requires far more accuracy. Scientific journals found on PubMed thoroughly critique results of these procedures and publish the results.
I’ve stated studies within this website that will provide you with an estimate percentage of success rate. For example, in my webpage ‘List of Alternatives to DCR surgery’, I quote from a study:
‘Dacryocystoplasty (DCP) was offered as an alternative to patients waiting for dacryocystorhinostomy (DCR) for epiphora. 31 procedures were undertaken with a technical success rate of 93% and a clinical improvement in 89% of these patients. It is concluded that DCP should be the technique of choice in the initial management of epiphora due to stenosis or occlusions of the nasolacrimal ducts before contemplating a DCR’
Generally, the success rate percentage of these non-invasive, safer alternatives are LOWER than DCR. However, it depends if you are willing to risk a 90% success rate with possible long term complications and a permanently altered lacrimal system. Or would you trade a lower success rate, such as 60% for a significantly SAFER procedure that does not alter the lacrimal system and involves NO DRILLING of holes in the bone?
My argument is the eye surgeons offer DCR as the gold standard, first line therapy for epiphora. Their theory is that DCR is 90% success rate and more effective, so we’ll drill through the bone and just get the job done. Next patient please! The fact that complications are radically higher compared to the safer alternatives are ignored just for a higher success rate? Does that make sense?
YOUR RIGHT TO CHOSE
Most surgeons are very quick to slam DCR in your face without a word of the safer alternatives even existing. You’re right to lesser invasive techniques and the ability to chose benefit over risk/complication ratio is ignored. You’re right to chose is stripped away from you. My website gives you back your human right to choose what you get.
EVERYTHING AND I MEAN EVERYTHING HAS BEEN DONE TO GET THE EXCESSIVE WATER OUT !!??
Whilst you state literally EVERYTHING has been done, you didn’t list not even one of those as an example. I need some more specificity and clarification.
Did you mean ‘stopping the tearing’ rather than ‘getting the water out?’… they are two completely different things. I’m a bit baffled about ‘getting water out’. A tearing eye is going to continue tearing and there’s no way to ‘get the water out’ because it will continue to be filled again. Liken it to a full bucket of water with a hose running in it. If you get a cup and scoop two cups of water out, the hose will just refill it again. Thus it’s an impractical activity.
The other challenge is: Have you really, indeed, done EVERYTHING? Can you please list exactly what you’ve tried to ‘get the excessive water out’. I require EVERYTHING you’ve done please, even if you have to write a long list.
Does EVERYTHING include the ‘alternatives’ I list in this site?… eg: # Probing # Balloon dilatation # Stenting
I personally haven’t had any of these procedures done. The ‘probing’ is not to be confused with ‘syringing’, which is using a saline syringe. Probing is using a steel wire carefully probed through the obstruction within the lacrimal system. Please refer to the research I’ve indicated for this procedure within this website.
We all look forward to your further clarification so we are able to assist you better.
I had a DCR and stents placed in my eyes at the beginning of March. My eyes are tearing more than ever, and the doctor said they will until he removes the stents. Well, now I have nodules forming under my eyes, and the doctor said my eyes are rejecting the stents. He plans to take them out in two weeks if my situation doesn’t improve. Since I had so much scar tissue around my tear ducts, he said they will close up immediately, and I will have to live with the constant tearing. Has anyone had a similar situation and found a way to control the tearing?
My wifes eye water real bad had tear ducts cleaned ,did not work,stints put in 5 months ago still eye r real red and watery enough that she goes through a box of tissues everyday, they cant seem to fix,but had no problem billing me for 800.00,same with the first doctor they keep bouncing her back and forth and i am refusing to pay for something that did not work
Hi George, thanks for the help and being a blessing to others. I have been tearing for about 30 years, in the beginning, it wasn’t that bad, the eye will dry up itself, but within these 2 years, it became worse, both of my eyes are tearing and I need to use tissue to wipe it away constantly. I have been seeing a few eye doctors for this problem. I also have eye discharge, kind of yellowish.
Finally, my ophthalmologist recommends me to have DCR surgery, I am afraid of the complications from the surgery. if the surgery causes me unexpected outcome, I rather stay where I am now with the tearing eyes for the rest of life. I am pretty much a happy person with the tearing eyes as long as it won’t affect my eyesight. Of course, having a tearing eyes is very unpleasant.
My ophthalmologist is young and very pleasant to talk to, but she told me there is no guarantee about the surgery. I asked her what is the % of success, she said one eye is 90% and the other eye is 75%. She still need to find out where is the blockage for my left eye.
Will the tear duct block again after the years of surgery?
What do you think/
I was diagnosed with a blocked tear duct. My duct closed up after irritation from wearing contacts. I have been wearing contacts all my life but never had a problem until I reached age 50. She said that I needed to have the DCR procedure because my duct would never come back open. I have it scheduled but I am reluctant because my eye isn’t infected anymore since I have been wearing my glasses for the last 3 weeks. I called the office to let them know this and they said that even though my eye has cleared up the infection and the constant dripping, the blockage is still there and I still need the DCR. Should I go into the office and have them probe me again to see if it went away?? Please help!
Hi Carrie, as we get older dry eyes can become a problem and they can often lead to blocked tear ducts and tearing. Long term contact wear can also contribute to the problem. I do not recommend DCR surgery and I recommend you demand they use a steel ‘probe’ to try and unblock it. The syringing is not strong enough. They will often refuse and tell you it doesn’t work, and then you move onto another eye specialist. Find an eye doctor whom will consider and try the alternative methods (please refer to my site) of unblocking a tear duct.
Hi, I’m reading your comments with interest as 6 years ago I had dcr surgery on my left eye as a result of scar tissue forming from the chicken pox virus in my ducts. I had suffered with a watering eye and a constant tissue in hand for 12 years so was over the moon to be offered a solution however the surgery was a ‘failure’ as when they opened me up they saw that I had less of my tube intact than first thought (7.5mm). Anything under 8mm would mean a Lester Jones tube but as I had not given permission they did not insert it but carried on with the stent. I have had it in ever since upon their advice. Most of the time it’s been a 70% improvement which is fantastic but over the years I’ve had infections and times where its felt more blocked than others. For the last 4 months it’s felt as blocked as it was before the surgery and really frustrating as i don’t know what’s changed. I’m going to see a specialist (privately) next week who is an expert in this field to see if he can offer me any advice or solutions. I was wondering if there’s anyone else out there who has had to keep the ‘stents’ in? …..
Hi Josie, I’m not sure what you are referring to regarding a ‘stent’ (is it a ‘mini-monoka stent’?). It can mean several things and be inserted in different areas. If you were supposed to have a Lester Jones tube placed in that means there was a blockage or dysfunction/abnormality of the canuliculus. It seems yours was shorter than it should be and I’m at a loss why you didn’t receive the correct treatment considering the diagnosis. So I’m a bit lost until you can clarify more.
I’m hoping the eye doctor you’ll be consulting with shortly can offer you a solution that works. Please do keep us informed and all the very best of luck.
Hey George, thanks for replying so quickly. I’m guessing stent is the wrong word, it’s a silicone tube that was meant to be taken out after a few months but has been left in as they said removal would mean failure due to the level of scarring. I didn’t give permission for a lester jones tube beforehand so thats why they went ahead with the dcr surgery. I hope that makes more sense. I know there are cases where it has been left in situ but not met anyone so far that has kept it in long term….Thanks 🙂
Enjoyed every bit of your article post. Fantastic.
Some time after nasal turbino (sp) reduction surgery,
I experienced a blocked tear duct in my right eye. On consultation with an eye surgeon after about 90 days, I was advised that my condition was likely the outcome of the aging process (I’m 73) and that surgery was needed to correct the duct with insert of two tubes from the eye down into the nasal cavity to discharge the excess tears. Having interest in an option to surgery, I consulted a
homeopathic pharmacist who suggested eye rinse and
netipot saline solution twice daily. Have been using this
prescription now for about 90 days (in both eyes), and
excess tearing has completely abated; works for me…
so far. Thus, I’m optimistic for being tear free for future
months and years.
Hi Adrian, well this is very good news. You used a netipot and saline eye rinse solution twice daily. It’s a simply technique anyone can use on there own.
Thankyou for sharing and telling us what worked for you Adrian! I hope the relief continues. Please do keep us informed.
After 9 years of putting up with tearing and a chapped dace in the wintertime because of it. I tried everything you suggested over those 9 years and nothing helped. I am happy to say DCR was the Best thing I could have done. My scar healed up completely and no tearing. No dry eye. It worked perfectly for me. If you have problems with yours you got the wrong doctors to perform your surgery.
HI Bex, thanks for informing us about your successful DCR. I disagree with your statement that if DCR results in complications then it’s the surgeons fault. The surgeon whom performed my DCR is regarded as the best oculoplastic surgeon in Melbourne. He also charges a lot more for the same surgery than others. Thus it’s not the surgeon, but the technique of DCR itself. No matter who performs DCR, they ALL drill a hole in your nasal fossa (nor do many of them inform they will be drilling into your skull).
How does the fact that DCR worked out perfectly for you mean it will work the same for everyone else? The reality is…IT CAN’T.
I’ve received HUNDREDS of emails where DCR has resulted in significant complications. I personally still live DAILY with complications from DCR that was performed 9 years ago!! I’ve also spent over $30,000 and travelled my country consulting the highest regarded surgeons to relieve the pain and distress from my DCR complications. I’ve endured 3 surgeries in an attempt to find relief. None of them have really worked. So PREVENTION IS BETTER THAN CURE.
Bex, you are one of the lucky one’s and escaped complications. But that doesn’t mean they don’t exist, nor does it mean that everyone should consider DCR. I am alerting people to the real life complications that CAN and DO occur with DCR and providing them with other solutions
I have epiphora on my right eye and I live in Sydney. Who is your Oculoplastic Surgeon?.
I ha successful DCR surgery and put it off for years because I was scared. It’s the best thing I have done. I was getting constant infections from wiping my eye and I had a hard time leading meetings. The tearing was affecting my work, my personal life and my health. For everyone thinking about DCR I suggest trying the balloon first then doing endonasal DCR. I had no scars and I was out and about the next day. I felt instant tearing relief after the surgery. I know some have had issues but there are also so many successes out there. My quality of life was deeply affected by fear because I put this off. I’m so thankful I did it. You may need to find an ENT to do the procedure. They know the nasal cavity the best. But find one that does multiple DCR procedures a month.
I almost went through with a DCR and a Jones Tube implant to my right eye in September 2015. My eye watered profusely for 3 months prior. I was diagnosed by a ophthalmologist and told my full blockage would never go away. Further more referred to a ocuplastic surgeon…
I failed multiple saline syringes and probing again and again. GPs were reluctant to give me antibiotics,and I was never told to get an X-ray by the ocuplastic surgeon. When I enquired about techniques to improve it I was laughed at. This was disheartening given that I was visiting the top ranked specialist in Brisbane, Australia.
I was 29 at the time, suffering from allergies and a couple out of control auto immune diseases. I was generally stressed and unwell.
I decided that the surgery and future prospects were horrendous and with increasing advancements in nano technology – I was convinced that one day there would be another way.
I started watching YouTube clips on treatments for young babies with nasolacrimial/eye duct blockages.
The first night I massaged both my eyes in a hot shower, started hot compresses 3-4 times a day and committed to taking antihistamines daily. It’s a basic massage that I repeated for 2 months until one day I felt some tears run down my right nostril…I kept going. A week later something very hard and small dislodged from my sinus and I blew it out. My eye had returned to normal. After more than a year I still practice the routine massage on my eye (and more recently my whole sinus)..
Please try it out before giving up. I sincerely hope this method helps someone else, N
Hi Nardia…thanks for sharing your discovery! …. And I’ll be sure to recommend it to others as another option to try to avoid the dreaded DCR surgery.
Hi George, thanks so much for generating awareness by sharing your experience on this site. I wrote a few weeks ago but my posts seem to have disappeared! I’ve had a very runny right eye for a few months now, which regularly gets infected and gunky in the corner. Two consultants tried syringing it, declared it completely blocked and say there is no alternative to DCR surgery so I’m on the waiting list but with huge trepidation: I desperately want to avoid it. Three weeks ago, inspired by N’s story I learned to massage the duct area and can now ‘manage’ the tearing pretty well by pressing hard on the area when it gets congested and sending the tears down my nose. If I do this every 3 – 4 hours, it stops the overflow and keeps on top of the tearing. This suggests to me that the blockage must be partial rather than total? If so, do you think it’s worth persisting more assertively with a request for probing and balloon dilation rather than DCR? My surgeon dismissed this approach, together with any scans, x-rays etc as a ‘waste of time’ and said that there is no alternative to DCR! I’m in UK and have tried ringing several well-known eye hospitals who all have the same stance. Any suggestions gladly received!
I would urge you to continue on a pursuit to locate a surgeon who is ‘people focussed’. Any surgeon not willing to listen to your concerns about avoiding DCR and wishing to try something alternative is not worth your time…or money!
It’s too common that eye surgeons recommend DCR and inaccurately state that there is no other way. In fact, there ARE other ways that exist…and DO work. So they are blatantly lying to people and ignoring their patients requests. They know best, and how dare you question that!
Not only are they lying, they are being reckless by throwing people into surgery from such a flimsy ‘saline syringe’. The motto: If it regurgitates = there’s a block = DCR surgery. That is atrocious!!
You have the right to demand a Macrodacrocystogram to fully ascertain where the blockage is located.
Well, you don’t need doctors like that. The good news is this…
Brilliant eye specialists with a bedside manner to equal their skills are out there! I’ve had emails from clients whom have come across very accommodating eye surgeons. One particular Australian man presented to an eye doctor with a tearing eye. He was successful in communicating his desire to avoid a DCR to his doctor. As such, his doctor bought new surgical equipment capable of exploring the tear duct at a microscopic level…
…it was found that a simple cyst was causing the blockage that could easily be removed without DCR surgery.
So I would encourage you not to cave into your doctors pressure of DCR surgery. It’s very tempting when the odds seem stacked against you. The most difficult part is finding an accommodating surgeon and I understand you’ve approached several of them already.
I’d suggest widening your reach to surgeons in private practice. Do you have private health insurance? Regardless, you should be able to list 20 or more eye surgeons and physically phone each of them with your request. Ask their secretary if their surgeon would be willing to treat adult tearing with lesser invasive probing before DCR surgery. You’ll get a yes or no answer… and I was surprised when I used this technique (in Australia) that 2 of them had no problem at all using alternative techniques. The average was 2 out of 12 surgeons seemed more accommodating.
Let us know where your thoughts are now and keep us informed with your progress!
you don’t have any recommendations for eye surgeons in Sydney that may also offer DCP as opposed to just DCR do you?
My child has a blocked tear duct most likely from periorbital cellulitis he had last month and after seeing the eye surgeon they have said he has to have DCR surgery.
Sorry i don’t have any recommendations for you. It’s best to call them all and inquire.
George, thanks so much for your response, which spurs me on; it’s very easy to succumb to the pressure of ‘expertise’, especially as I really liked and trusted the oculoplastics surgeon who would be doing the DCR: it’s just the rationale and procedure itself that horrifies me! I actually suspect something like a little fluid-filled cyst that empties when compressed but no-one seems curious about the cause; only that it can be by-passed! To me that’s like treating a blocked sink by drilling through a wall and building a new drain! I’ve booked in to see an osteopath next week partly to try a more holistic approach and possibly as a medical ally in requesting non-invasive procedures first. I’m also hoping to meet with someone who recently had DCR but had a similar experience to yourself. Armed with your questions I’m going to persist in my endeavour to research and find someone who’ll try other techniques first – starting with the oculoplastics surgeon who said it won’t work – before I come off his DCR waiting list. Will certainly get back with a progress report but meanwhile, if anyone else has found amenable consultants in UK I’d be glad to hear!
My eyes started pooling. Not running down my face so that I can wipe them away. In Mar.or Apr. Of this year (2017). I went to an optician who wasted 3 moths having me use several different kinds with no improvemet at all. Next went to an Opthamologist for a month till he told me that he couldn’t help me because he thought my tear ducts were blocked so he referred me to an opthamolic plastic surgeon. After shooting some colored solution with a big needle into my tear ducts, he told me thatmy tear du ts were blocked. I trusted him to whatever I needed to stop the pooing of tears in my eyes. He said I needed DCR surgery. He did no xrays or offered me any other solutions. As I said I trustedhim and did no research. Now I am going on 3 months out from the surgery with no improvemennt. I have since done a lot of research and have decided to look online for the best eye surgeon in Texas. I had to wait until Jan. 18 and about a 5 hr. Drive from me but J have been willing to wait for another surgeon to tell me either the right surgery was done or do whatever it takes to stop this pooling in my eyes. I am miserable and it has taken over my life. Will post again after I get the second opinion.
Hi Judy, thanks for writing. With regards to the first optician did you mean you were give eye drops?, because you didn’t mention what treatment was provided.
Yes, ophthalmologists use a cookie cutter style approach to treating a weeping eye. They inject saline into your naso-lacrimal duct, and if it gushes back out…they declare it’s blocked and send you to a surgeon for DCR surgery (or they do it themselves). This sort of nonsense HAS TO STOP. They do NO further investigations to locate exactly where the block is. In many instances, it can be a very thin block in an area that can simply be ‘probed’ out. But they can’t be bothered, it’s too much effort for them. Or they can’t think outside the box and go that extra mile for their patient. Rather, they want to quickly see the next patient waiting. They make more money per hour seeing more people.
I’m sorry you put your trust in your surgeon. And I’m sorry you had DCR. It’s a wretched surgery and 10 years later I am still suffering the side effects of this surgery and it affects my daily life.
Judy, you can see the best surgeon in Texas, but I’m afraid he’ll only just you have a ‘second’ DCR operation. I know people whom have had three!! Because, it doesn’t always work.
In terms of you driving 5 hours. I’ve caught a plane to two different states in Australia for eye treatment and spent over $40,000 in search of relief from the dreaded side effects.
Please let us know what the surgeon in Texas advises you. We are all in this together and need to learn from each other. Best of luck!
I have been offered DCR and the jones stop loss tubes I think I will live with it for the time being as only 1/5 success rate!
On the plus side, your eyes get drier as you get older! Doesn’t help me much now though as I’m not even 40 yet!
Is there a Facebook page set up for this group??
Hi Amber! – So you have a leaky eye? Is it a complete or partial block? Have they done a macrodacrocystogram to locate where the block is because often, it’s location and thickness means it can be probed out with a wire.
Eyes dry up around the age of 60 onwards. You’ve got a long way to go yet. But having dry eyes won’t stop tearing at all. Many older people, well into their 60’s get DCR operations. That’s because they ‘still’ produce tears and it accumulates in the tear sac, and pools up with no outlet…other than regurgitating back out of the eye and rolling down the cheek.
You may find you’ll get very frustrated with the tearing if you leave it untreated. You can try placing some thick vaseline around the area it leaks down which will prevent skin irritation.
Let us know what you decide do to and best of luck!
Have a similar condition where I’ve had stents inserted in both eyes and one of the eyes I’m told is completely blocked while the other is partially working. For the eye with a complete blockage, I’m told the tissues have grasped onto the stent and I’ll need a jones tube. The above comments have really helped as it’s really hard to get first hand accounts from these types of surgeries. Still not sure what my direction will be but I’m tempted to see if I can live with the tearing. I’ve found wasting my face over and over gives me a little escape from the tears but they come back pretty quickly. I’m thinking it’s all about pros/cons for my situation and to keep my options open until i can’t take it anymore.
I found placing vaseline where the tears roll down the sides of the nose helped for a bit. Also massaging the corner of the eyes to drain the tears more and wipe them away. A jones tube is usually need higher up in the nasal system, whereas with most blocked ducts it’s lower in the naso-lacrimal duct. Eventually, you will get sick of the tearing. I certainly found the constant wiping my eye annoying and the skin around the upper eyelid got extremely red raw, thinned out and irritable from constant exposure to salty tears. That was 13 yrs ago! It’s still very thinned and weaker than the opposite eye. Thanks for sharing your experience.
Let us know how you get on.