Most patients who wear prosthetic eye experience some discomfort after a while. That is why it is very important to be aware of the different conditions or circumstances that may cause these discomforts. It is also important to know how to address them properly at the right time and with the right procedure.
To make sure that it would be a little bit easier for patients and their families to remember the list of discomforts and the necessary steps to be taken to correct them, we will try to enumerate them by giving them one-by-one through the letters: D-I-S-C-O-M-F-O-R-T:
D – Dry Mucous
Some instances dry mucous build-up roughly on the socket with a prosthetic eye. This happens if the patient's eyelids do not close completely over the prosthesis during sleep. It results in the accumulation of partially dried matter on the front of the eye as they wake up in the morning. A rolled-up tip of a quality facial tissue moistened with warm water can help in clearing this off. It doesn't need to remove the eye. Just make sure that you'll never use any kind of cloth because it can dull the surfaces of the eye.
It’s observable that patients whose eyelids that close completely during sleep can have a very slow building up of matter. It usually starts as a thin film that is difficult to see. But this can also make the surface of the eye a little bit rough and can irritate the underside of the eyelids as they blink. One can already suspect the possible presence of this thin film if the eye socket is irritated with scratching and itching or burning sensation.
In this situation, it is very important to remove the prosthesis and carefully, but thoroughly, cleaned.
I – Infection
A patient must always remember that the socket tissues around the prosthetic eye can also become infected the same way that the companion eye can be. Different bacterial and viral infections may happen. Discomfort and yellow/greenish discharge can be some of the indications of infections. The tear duct or drainage may be closed. In these instances, it is very important to consult one's eye care specialist for proper medications and treatment.
S – Surface Polish
There are some instances that that surface polish of the prosthesis is lost and some deep scratches happen. These can be the results of dust in the air that can get in the tear film and the scrubbing of the eyelids while blinking may reduce the polish of the surface of the plastic. This has happened to many patients. Sometimes when prosthetics drop onto hard and rough surfaces, deep scratches are left on the eye. Both of these can irritate the underside of the eyelids.
To correct this issue, the eye must be re-polished. It is recommended that prosthesis must be re-polished at least once a year. This is to maintain the comfort of the eye socket. This may reduce any potential discharge.
C – Common Cold
Some patients have observed that when they have a common cold, they feel some discomfort. Mattering and some discharges from the socket of the prosthesis also happen while the other companion eye seems to be unaffected. It is very essential that during this period, removing the eye and washing it once a day may reduce the discomfort and discharge.
O – Old Plastic Eye
Old plastic or prosthetic eye can accumulate toxic substances. This may develop after a long period.
Some prosthesis is made of acrylic plastic or Methyl Methacrylate Resin that has intermolecular spaces that are large enough for the passage of water molecules and may take up water slowly while it is being bathed or washed. Water may move continually and stay in the empty spaces. With this, viruses and some bacteria can grow into the eye. Evidence shows that proteins gather in the plastic and that these may bring irritation in the eye socket.
For some, polishing or even refitting won’t make them comfortable. The correction of this problem is simply to have a new prosthetic eye made of new plastic.
M – Mishandled prosthesis
A proper handling procedure is a must. It is very vital that prosthetic eyes are handled properly and taken cared of cautiously. If a patient or his or her caregivers do not have that conscious effort of taking care of the prosthetic eye and the patient's eye, most of the time irritations and discomforts happen. Bacteria and viruses, foreign matters and some other microorganisms that may cause problems may occur.
F – Foreign Bodies
There will be some instances that foreign bodies will get into the eye socket of the prosthesis. Sometimes dust or other larger particles can enter into the eye socket. An eyelash can be carried into the socket while replacing the eye. When these happen, it can cause some discomfort and irritation. Thus, it requires removal and thorough cleaning.
O – Opthalmitis
Opthalmitis or sympathetic Opthalmitis can be caused by the surgery made on the damaged eye. It harms the healthy aye following eye removal. It shows as an inflammation of the healthy eye. Although it is treatable, it can also lead to vision loss in a healthy eye. This may be caused by infection and if not treated properly it may cause some discomforts and may lead to a bigger problem for the eye socket of the prosthesis. This can be easily treated using antibiotic drops or oral antibiotics.
R – Reaction to Allergies
House dust, animal hair, pollens from plants, dairy products, potatoes, and other foods may cause some allergies to some individuals. And sometimes may affect the surface tissues of the eyes without being aware of any discomfort. In this situation, it is very important to know the person's allergies by consulting an allergist and an ophthalmologist to have proper awareness of this.
Completely cured prosthetic eye which has been made-up of pure, medical-grade acrylic usually does not cause allergy. While there is no guarantee, perfectly fitted, fabricated and carefully cured prosthetic eye, is far from being a cause of allergies.
T – Tears
It would be embarrassing for a person wearing a prosthetic eye would have some sudden discharges of large stale tears and mucous over the eyelid onto the face. Yes, sometimes it happens when the eye socket has accumulated tears and produced some mucoid discharges. This is caused by salts from the tears that irritate the tissues produce some mucus. Everyone must be aware that eye sockets of most persons change in shape slowly over time; due to the effects of the surgery, aging and fat wastes from the depths of its orbit. This results in pockets of space between the eye and the tissues, and if filled with tears and if collected it becomes stale or hard, thus, causing irritation and some discharges.
With all of these discomforts, a patient and those who take care of them must have constant contact with their eye care specialist. Regular consultation and check-ups are necessary to make sure that the prosthetic eye and its companion eye remains healthy.
Causes for Prosthetic Eye Discomfort. (n.d.). Retrieved July 23, 2019, from https://carolinaeyeprosthetics.com/causes-prosthetic-eye-discomfort/
Cirino, E. (2018, May 24). Prosthetic Eye: Cost, Care, Surgery, and More. Retrieved July 23, 2019, from https://www.healthline.com/health/prosthetic-eye
Post-Enucleation problems. (n.d.). Retrieved July 22, 2019, from https://chect.org.uk/resources-2/gp/post-enucleation-problems/
6 Benefits of using a Custom-made Prosthetic Eyes
Eyes are considered as one of our most important body parts. And the truth is, a larger part of our brain is dedicated to vision. Therefore, losing an eye is never a good situation. This is one of the unimaginable things a Filipino can ever experience. However, with the continuous scientific and technological research and advancement in the field of optometry, several options are already made available to help a person who's lost an eye. One of which is getting a Prosthetic Eye in the Philippines. It has brought a lot of benefits for individuals who decided to wear them. They even said that it changed their lives for the better. Because of technological advancement, wearing prosthetic eyes is now difficult to recognize because they have been made already amazingly natural. You will never know if someone is wearing a prosthetic eye if you don't know the person very well.
There are several personal benefits given by prosthetic eyes, however, the following are seven obvious benefits most wearers of prosthetic eyes will experience:
1. Artificial Eyes improves Physical Appearance
It is true that having a disability is challenging. Especially if it affects a person's visual capacity. Other person's biases, judgmental stares, and rude and insensitive questioning make visually impaired individuals feel uncomfortable and make them hide their disability. That is why some of them who are missing an eye would result in wearing eye patches. But this makes them much more uncomfortable because their disability became more obvious. Other than that, there are no much options for individuals with eye disability, unless, they choose to wear a prosthetic eye.
The good thing is, nowadays, many individuals decide on having a prosthetic eye custom-made and fitted. This is in order to develop their appearance and make them look as normal as possible as the rest of the world. These prosthetic eyes are custom made by an ocularist who specializes in creating artificial eyes. It is interesting to know that most prosthetic eyes are made and composed of acrylic and the iris is hand-painted and usually based on the existing remaining eye of the new owner. The prosthetic eyes can be created a very close match with the other one and therefore can improve an individual’s appearance physically and at the same time giving them the confidence they definitely deserve.
2. Increases Facial Attractiveness
Prosthetic eyes do not only improve the physical appearance of the person wearing it. Since it replicates the eye that was lost, it balances facial features. Therefore it restores facial attractiveness. The prosthetic eyes, give an individual a much beautiful look. It helps in increasing the attractiveness of the person’s facial features.
3. Proper Facial Function
An enormous benefit of wearing a prosthetic eye is that it permits the body to function properly. Much more than the facial attractiveness and improving the physical appearance of a person with a disability, prosthetic eyes also helps a lot in the proper facial functioning. It is one of the favorable advantage or benefit of a prosthetic eye. It gives a person's body a chance to work properly. Based from clinical studies, if after losing an eye through surgery and a prosthetic eye is not immediately fitted and worn, the tendency is, the eye socket will begin shutting and the eyelid will be drained and start to stop working properly.
On the other hand, if after an eye removal surgery and a prosthetic eye was immediately fitted and worn, the eye socket is given the chance to be on its great shape and normal size. Additionally, it also gives a person’s eyelid the chance to work accurately. The prosthetic eye is not just a way to complete a person’s appearance, but it is also an avenue to guarantee that the eye socket and rest of the eye structure continue to function properly and accurately. This specific benefit is not possible if a person is just wearing an eye patch.
4. Lifts a person’s self-esteem and self-confidence
One of the very obvious effects of losing an eye is the issue of self-esteem. Having that feeling of lacking and being normal, many individuals who have lost an eye, or both, suffer from low self-esteem or confidence. It decreases their social interaction, opted to stay away from others and limits communicating with peers are just some of the manifestations of low self-esteem individuals. However, wearing a prosthetic eye that appears exactly like the other eye really increases a person's confidence and self-esteem. Wearing it makes them no longer appear to have a disability. Also, having a prosthetic eye that is so real-looking will definitely complete an individual's physical appearance like anybody else. It ‘hides' one's disability and makes people feel comfortable and confident on their own. Many of those who are already wearing artificial eyes would say that they become attractive again and feel that they are again "whole." This experience definitely boosts their self-confidence.
Additionally, having a prosthetic eye that bears a resemblance to the other eye will definitely build a person’s confidence. It is because it will not emphasize the fact that a person has an inability. The artificial eyes boost up the person’s confidence who don’t have an eye.
5. It brings up a better personality
Since losing an eye affects a person’s self-esteem or self-confidence, it definitely affects their totality as an individual. This is caused by unfair treatment, inconsiderate and insensitive treatment of strangers to those who have lost an eye or both eyes. It sometimes drives them to question their own identity and loses their own worthiness. However, many studies have already stated that wearing a prosthetic eye show several signs of improvement in a person's identity. They regain their own worth as an individual as they recover their confidence in doing things in society. They become a better person after wearing a prosthetic eye.
6. Brings back social functions
Lastly, since the fitting and wearing a prosthetic eye builds or rebuilds self-esteem and self-confidence and makes an individual's personality a better one, it will definitely demonstrate in a person's social well-being. They start again to communicate and attend social functions and become a more productive member of society.
Although Prosthetic eyes are not designed to restore ones impaired or lost vision, its enhancement on a person’s appearance and the rebuilding and improvement of his or her emotions is surely guaranteed.
Benefits of Prosthetic Eyes. (n.d.). Retrieved April 23, 2019, from http://www.waterdownoptometric.ca/view/article_4.3conx
Benefits of Wearing a Prosthetic Eye. (2018, December 19). Retrieved April 23, 2019, from http://www.seocularists.com/2018/08/30/benefits-of-wearing-a-prosthetic-eye/
Dr Mark Paroli is a Licensed Doctor of Optometry in the Philippines who has special interest in Prosthetic Eye fitting, Low Vision Rehabilitation, Hard and Soft Contact Lens. He has been fitting custom made Artificial eyes in the Philippines for more than ten years.
Enucleation and Prosthetic Eye
The eyes are one of the most important parts of every one’s body. It is actually the most highly developed sensory organs. However, there are some times that man tend to take eyesight for granted and eye problems develop that may lead to surgery and eye removal. However, there are already several available eye treatment and surgeries that one may choose when time comes that there’s a need for it. Enucleation and the use of prosthetic eyes are just some of them.
What is Enucleation and Prosthetic Eye?
Enucleation is the surgical process of removing the entire eye which may be due to a severe injury or pain to the eye, tumors, infection, last stages of glaucoma, or cancer in the eye while the muscles and tissues that surround the socket are kept intact. After the surgical process, the individual is provided with an artificial or prosthetic eye which will be used to replace the eyeball that was removed. In most cases, the prosthetic eye is attached to the eye muscles in order to preserve eye movement which helps make the artificial eye look natural. Enucleation becomes necessary for an individual especially when he or she feels severe pain in the partially or completely blind eye because of the diseases or illnesses mentioned. Taking the surgical process would treat particular eye diseases and alleviate the pain in a patient's eye. It would also improve the quality of their life greatly (Kelly, 2018).
When Enucleation and Prosthetic Eye are needed?
Valeshabad (2014) found out that relatively, pain in the blind eye is the most common indication of surgery which is followed by leukocoria and endophthalmitis. His study also stated that the main types of injury include accidents in the road or work, firecrackers, and injury from sharp objects. The surgery is mostly done under general anesthesia wherein it helps the patient to not feel any pain during the procedure. After the surgery, a conformer is positioned behind the eyelids. This helps to keep the shape of the eye even after surgery. A stitch is then made to hold the eyelids together for a few days. The artificial eye will replace the conformer in a few weeks time just after the surgery on the eye has sufficiently healed. During the healing process, the conformer may start to fall out in the first few weeks. The conformer could be replaced but the patient must make sure that it is cleaned with soap and water before being placed back in between the eyelids.
Do Enucleation and Prosthetic Eyes have side effects?
Every surgery has its own effects. The patient may feel a headache, nausea, or eye pain in one or two days after the surgery. The doctor will prescribe the patient with pain-relieving medicines to help the patient in the discomfort he or she will be having after the surgery. Once the surgical wound has healed, a follow-up visit is done by the patient. The eye doctor will then remove the conformer and replace it with an artificial eye. A topical antibiotic is given which should be applied to the wound several times for the following few weeks.
How do Enucleation and Prosthetic Eyes help a patient?
The prosthetic eye will give the patient benefits compared to deciding to not have one. These benefits include increased self-esteem, physical appearance, and proper facial function. The eyelids after a surgical procedure would most likely close in on itself which is why it is recommended for a prosthetic one to be placed. It helps maintain the eyelid movement as well as the shape of the eye. Without the artificial eye in place, the eyelids would not function properly. Also, most of the patients who have undergone enucleation suffer from self-esteem issues. They are afraid that the way people used to look at them will change. A prosthetic eye will help make their appearance look natural as the artificial eye is crafted and designed based on the other remaining eye. A patch most frequently makes them feel like they are different from the rest. With the prosthetic eye, however, there isn't much difference in their appearance ever since before they got an eye surgery which greatly boosts their self-confidence.
How long does a Prosthetic Eye last and how to take care of them?
An artificial eye may last for less than 5 years. Within the third and fifth year of use, the artificial eye must be replaced because of the tendencies of the soft tissues to settle into the eye socket. There are certain things that can be done to take care of the prosthetic eye that the patient will be continuously using. When cleaning the prosthetic eye, rubbing alcohol or other chemical solvents must never be used. A contact lens cleaning solution either hard or gas permeable could be used. The prosthetic eye must also never be sterilized using heat. The frequent removal or cleaning of the prosthetic eye is not really something that is recommended. As long as the prosthesis feels comfortable to the patient, it should just be kept in place. However, there are certain times wherein mucous secretion within the eye socket makes the patient feel uncomfortable. It is then recommended for the patient to do a certain cleaning procedure on the prosthetic eye. It is also highly recommended to wear a pair of glasses which has shatterproof lenses. This is a great way of protecting the eyes in the case of a facial injury.
(See: Importance of professionally polishing your prosthetic eye)
Most of the patients who have undergone this surgical procedure are worried that it may affect their lifestyle. But, in fact, those who had undergone this procedure can even play sports. Specific safety glasses can be worn in order to ensure the protection of the eye which had undergone Enucleation. Patients can also do leisure activities such as swimming. However, it is recommended that goggles must be worn to preserve the life of the prosthetic eye and to avoid any damage.
With today’s modern medical technology, the current prosthetic eyes are made look so much like a natural eye. That no one could tell the difference. It might only look like artificial if the eyelid is dropping a little bit which can only be noticed if it was observed by someone close-up. It may be hard for most patients to adjust because losing an eye greatly affects them emotionally. Patients who had a hard time dealing with the thought that they have lost their eye could consult a psychiatrist to help them cope with the situation and continue living the normal life. Having a prosthetic eye may not change or affect one’s lifestyle. However, it may affect the way the patient sees himself or herself as someone with a disability. It is important to provide options like that of a prosthetic eye.
Valeshabad, A. (2014). Enucleation and evisceration: Indications, complications and Clinicopathological correlations. Int J Ophthalmol,7(4), 2014th ser., 677-680. doi:https://dx.doi.org/10.3980/j.issn.2222-3959.2014.04.17
Yom, K. H. (2018, September 17). Enucleation and Evisceration: What to Expect. Retrieved April 5, 2019, from https://webeye.ophth.uiowa.edu/eyeforum/cases/279-anophthalmic-socket.htm
Enucleation Surgery - Removal of the Eye » New York Eye Cancer Center. (2016, June 15). Retrieved April 5, 2019, from https://eyecancer.com/eye-cancer/treatments/enucleation-surgery-removal-of-the-eye/
Losing an Eye: Enucleation and Prosthetic Eye FAQ. (n.d.). Retrieved April 5, 2019, from https://www.allaboutvision.com/conditions/enucleation-prosthetic-eye.htm
Prosthetic Eye (Ocular Prosthesis): Surgery, Care, Types. (n.d.). Retrieved April 5, 2019, from https://www.webmd.com/eye-health/prosthetic-eye-ocular-prosthesis#1
My Artificial Eye gallery has been updated recently
I have recently updated my works about Artificial Eye, patients I did in my clinic in SM City Clark, Pampanga, Philippines.
An Artificial Eye has a beginning and also a time to have it replaced.
In this post, we will be discussing the 7 Life Cycle of an Acrylic Artificial Eye, from the time it's fitted by your Ocularist, up to the time when it needs to be replaced.
The 7 Life Cycle of an Artificial Eye
1. The Need
A Custom-made Artificial Eye is usually created to a person who recently loss his eye due to a disease or injury. In some cases, Doctors opt to no longer remove an Eye, and go straight ahead to putting a Scleral Shell Prosthesis.
2. The Creation
A Professional will then start to create an Artificial Eye. It usually begins by getting the Shape of your Eye Socket. Usually started by injecting an Impression paste on the inside of the eye socket.
3. The Artistry
Then the details will be added, such as Color of the Sclera, Iris, the Blood Vessels and if there is a presence of Pterygium on the real eye.
4. The Comfort
The Prosthesis is finished and is made sure that scratches are absent during the fitting.
5. The Follow Up
Your Doctor will ask you to do a follow up to check the surrounding tissue after you’ve been using the Artificial eye for quite some time. Questions like did you experience any problem, or did the eye rotate, may be asked to the patient.
6. The Maintenance
After 6 months or 1 year of wearing the Artificial Eye, it may be needed to bring the Artificial Eye back to the clinic for a Professional Polish. This is to remove all those dried up proteins left in the surface of the Artificial Eye.
7. The Replacement
Throughout the years, changes may occur on the tissues of your eye socket, which will affect your Artificial Eye experience in many things such as Rotating Eyes or Misdirected Eye, or in some cases irritated Eye Sockets. Kids do need to change their Artificial Eyes more often than Adults.
I have currently updated the Artificial Eye gallery of this webpage.
Visit https://www.artificialeye.ph/artificial-eye-gallery.html for more information
Did you know?
Artificial Eye users who experiences continuous discharge may find it beneficial to regularly clean their eyelids and Eyelashes
What is the Eyelid?
Problems that may occur
There are instances that our Eyelids may become inflamed(Blepharitis) or that our Meibomian Glands gets inflamed as well, causing our Eyelid to become Red and Swollen, sometimes even painful.
It may be caused by many things:
What to do incase of Eyelid infection?
If you find that your Eyelid is already swollen, please do visit your Doctor to have it examined, as long term inflammation of the Eyelid may cause permanent damages to the Eyelids and the Eye Socket itself.
Why Do we need to Clean our Eyelids?
Once medication have started, cleaning your Eyelids and Eyelashes can be a good idea.
Done before the application of the medicines the your Doctor gave you, it can help prevent further infection of the eyelid.
This can also be done even without infection present, especially if you are a heavy makeup user, where you often apply some in your Eyelids/Eyelashes.
This is also important for Artificial Eye Users who experiences heavy mucus discharge, where the discharge reoccurs a few minutes after wiping their Eyelids.
How to Clean you Eyelids/Eyelashes
Things you will need:
As indicated above, the Warm water should be able to soften any dried up Oil and Mucus which could cause more problem in the future if it were to clog the Meibomian Gland opening, which could lead to infection.
The Baby Shampoo is a good cleaning agent, but if you are able to get a hold of a Blephagel, it is a very good alternative as it's formulated for people with blepharitis(Inflammation of the Eyelid).
Did you know? You can use your Contact Lens Solution to Clean your Artificial Eye?
There are many ways to clean your Artificial Eye, and one of them is by using your Contact Lens Solution. Throughout your wearing time, our eye socket (just like our original eye) also produce tears and mucous discharge that will eventually harden and makes wearing the prosthesis uncomfortable.
A Contact Lens solution does not only cleans and disinfects your Prosthesis, but also removes protein build ups.
A specific type of Contact Lens Solution would be those used by Hard Contact Lenses. Aside from Cleaning, Rinsing and Disinfecting the Artificial Eye, it also provides a slippery surface upon insertion of the Ocular Prosthesis, which I find a lot of users more relieved.
I usually advice my patients to soak their Prosthetic Eyes for at least 30 minutes, twice or thrice a week. (e.g. Soak it in the solution while taking a bath). Or just simply rinse the Prosthetic Eye itself. It's a better alternative than using TAP WATER to clean the Artificial Eye.
But this does not substitute the Yearly Professional Polishing and Cleaning of Your Prosthetic Eye.
(RELATED: Importance of professionally polishing and cleaning an Artificial Eye)
For questions, email me at email@example.com or Click here
Are you planning to visit to have an Artificial Eye done? Or just want to visit Pampanga?
There are Premium Point to point Buses for people who are looking for a Doctor who makes Artificial Eye in the Philippines, especially those Coming from Metro Manila. The premium buses does a stop over at Sm clark, meaning, not only will you have a comfortable ride, but you will also be dropped at the exact building.
The following are the stop overs coming from NAIA 3 (near Resorts World manila), Robinsons Galleria, and Trinoma.
Here are the Schedules:
Don’t hesitate to contact the numbers in the Photo to ask for schedules of the buses.
What is a good way to start the New Year? To get a Thank you Message by an Artificial Eye Patient.
It really warms my heart to receive messages like this where people who were supposed to be strangers suddenly becomes a big part of my life, through an Artificial Eye.
And what makes it better is when they put it in their message how the Artificial Eye is changing their lives.
This just made the start of my year very awesome!
Hoping to meet and help more people this 2018!
Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam!
Welcome to my blogsite
This is where my updates and stories about my practice in the art of making Artificial Eyes are posted