What kind of pain and side effects are there for punctual plugs eye surgery?


Quick Answer

After the initial insertion of a punctal plug, discomfort is minimal and eyes typically return to normal within a few minutes. An occasional side effect is that the punctal plug does its job too well and results in excessive tearing in the eyes, explains All About Vision.

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Full Answer

Insertion of the punctal plug is an in-office procedure in which the doctor performs a lighted examination of the punctum to determine which size of plug to use. According to All About Vision, some doctors apply a topical anesthetic locally but it is not necessary for all patients.

Displacement of the plug can occur when a patient rubs their eyes too much following insertion. Eye infections occur infrequently with these devices; patients may experience symptoms such as swelling and yellowish secretions, notes All About Vision. However, such infections and symptoms are often related to an upper respiratory infection after germs are driven up the nasal lacrimal system due to patients blowing their noses with pressure.

There are two different kinds of punctal plugs commonly used: the semi-permanent plugs, usually made of silicone, and the dissolvable plugs, usually made of a substance such as collagen that can be reabsorbed by the body, according to All About Vision.

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