Loss of an Eye: What You Should Know About Replacement

Removal of an eye is something that demands serious discussion and consideration. A relatively uncommon treatment, replacement of the natural eye may be necessary to address the effects of:

  • Ongoing eye pain
  • Traumatic injury
  • Melanoma or other life-threatening tumors in the eye
  • Severe infection
  • Glaucoma or other diseases
  • Uveitis

The decision to remove an eye is usually made only after an in-depth discussion with an ophthalmologist. This discussion explores all other treatment options based on their potential benefits and risks. Sometimes, removal makes the most sense because eyesight in the affected eye has already been lost or severely degraded. The eye itself may also be causing pain. Tumors may force the removal of an eye to save the patient’s life or to preserve sight in the healthy eye.

As innovative as it may sound to remove a diseased eye, this procedure has been performed since 2600 B.C. It is referred to as enucleation. The procedure may be performed in several ways. Generally, it involves removing the entire globe, severing all connections from that structure to the orbit. A different approach, called evisceration, removes only the inside of the eye. The white part of the eye and the colored part of the eye remain intact but nonfunctional. Enucleation allows a surgeon to insert an artificial eye. Studies indicate that doing so supports a person’s physical and mental well-being.

Benefits of the Artificial Eye

Artificial eyes used to be called glass eyes. However, they are usually made of acrylic material. To fit the artificial eye, a doctor makes a mold of the socket. This measurement facilitates the creation of a custom eye globe that supports a natural appearance as well as blinking function. A person does not need an artificial eye. The process of replacement will not restore sight, and a patch could be an alternative. However, many people who chose to have an artificial eye made have stated that their choice achieved specific benefits. These include:

  • Improved cosmetic appearance
  • Restored shape of the tissues around the eye
  • Lowered incidence of ulceration
  • Restored normalcy of eyelid movements
  • Improved sense of physical and mental wellness

The loss of an eye is life-changing in several ways. Your appearance and confidence don’t have to be affected. To learn more about treatment with an artificial eye, call our St. Louis office at 314-567-3567.

Posted in: Artificial Eye Surgery

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St. Louis, MO 314-567-3567