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Treatment From an Eye Specialist Near Me

Blocked Tear Duct (Dacryostenosis)

One of the main ways babies communicate with their parents and the people around them is by crying. But for babies and other young children with blocked tear ducts, it might seem like their tears are flowing constantly. A blocked tear duct prevents the eyes from draining properly, causing watery eyes and near-constant wetness around the eyes. Consequently, the blockage can also cause the eye's drainage structures to swell, become inflamed, or get infected due to the buildup of fluid.

At Alamo Pediatric Eye Center, Dr. Manpreet Chhabra treats children who have blocked tear ducts and other vision and eye health issues. With over two decades of clinical experience, Dr. Chhabra and our team provide comprehensive evaluations, diagnoses, and treatments for eye problems. If you think your child might have a blocked tear duct, don't hesitate to contact us. We're here to help!


Infant with clogged tear ducts

Best Ophthalmologist for Eye Duct Surgery

Symptoms of a Blocked Tear Duct

A blocked tear duct, also known as nasolacrimal duct obstruction, occurs when the tear duct that drains tears from the eye to the nose becomes blocked or fails to open properly. In some cases, this issue is present at birth due to underdeveloped tear ducts or congenital issues. However, it can also be caused by an injury to the duct, an eye infection, or a tumor or other growth blocking the duct. Regardless of the cause, this blockage can cause a number of issues and symptoms, such as:

  • Excessive tearing
  • Mucus or pus discharge from the eyes
  • Crusting around the eyes, especially after sleep
  • Redness or swelling near the inner corner of the eye
  • Recurrent eye infections

Dr. Chhabra will carefully evaluate your child's symptoms and medical history to determine the cause of the blocked tear duct. A thorough physical examination of the eye and surrounding area will be conducted. In some cases, additional tests may be needed to confirm the diagnosis and identify any underlying causes.

At Alamo Pediatric Eye Center, Dr. Chhabra offers a variety of treatment options based on the severity and cause of the blocked tear duct. Conservative management options include gently massaging the tear duct a few times a day, regularly using warm compresses, or prescribing antibiotics. Probing and balloon catheter dilation may be used if conservative options have not been successful. In extreme cases, a more invasive surgery, dacryocystorhinostomy may be recommended to open the blocked tear ducts and restore normal functioning.

Frequently Asked Questions

How common is it for a baby to be born with a blocked tear duct?

Around 6 out of every 100 newborn babies have this condition at birth. In some cases, particularly before a baby's first birthday, a blocked tear duct may resolve on its own. However, if the condition persists beyond the first year or causes recurrent infections, it is important to consult an eye care professional like Dr. Chhapra for proper diagnosis and treatment options.

Are there any preventive measures for blocked tear ducts?

While it may not be possible to completely prevent blocked tear ducts, maintaining good eye hygiene can help reduce the risk. That means regularly cleaning the eye area with warm water and a gentle cleanser, avoiding rubbing the eyes, and seeking prompt medical attention in case of eye infections or persistent symptoms.

Will insurance cover my child's blocked tear duct surgery?

At Alamo Pediatric Eye Center, we take immense pride in our commitment to providing accessible and comprehensive eye care for all children. We understand that healthcare costs can be a significant concern for many families, which is why we are pleased to accept most insurance plans, ensuring that your child receives the vital eye care they need without causing financial strain.

How can I get started with the best pediatric eye doctor near me?

We always aim to make requesting an appointment as simple and convenient as possible. You can request an appointment with us online, or if you'd prefer to talk to someone, give us a call at 210-624-8282. Our friendly staff will be happy to assist you in finding a suitable date and time for your child's appointment.

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