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Your Eyes March/April 2007

Eyelid Paralysis Often Related to Facial Nerves

by Dr. Tom Smith

Lagophthalmos is the term used for the inability to close the eye completely.  This paralysis of the muscle in the eyelid frequently accompanies paralysis of the facial nerve caused by Bell's palsy, trauma or stroke.  It can also be an indirect consequence of surgical removal of certain types of tumors close to the facial nerve.

Your lids play an essential role in protecting and providing nourishment to your eyes.  When blinking or eyelid closure function is lost, the health of your eyes can be at risk.  Experts not several complications associated with lagophthalmos, including severe dry eye and discomfort, damage to the cornea or the clear tissue covering the front of th eye, and decrease of  vision.

Lagophthalmos can be treated.  If paralysis is expected to last less than six months, the eyecare professional will normally recommend drops and ointments to help maintain well nourished eyes.  If the problem is considered permanent or persists without improvement, a surgeon may want to perform an operation, which includes placing a small, pure-gold eyelid weight into the eyelid.  The minor surgery is typically performed under local anesthesia in an outpatient setting.

Dr. Tom Smith
Drs. Smith and Smith
592 N. Main St.
McKenzie, TN 38201
731-352-2020
or toll free 1-877-710-2020

        Emu's Zine does not diagnose, prescribe or dispense medical advice.  We report and attempt to educate the public about the possible health benefits derived through the use of emu oil based products and consumption of low cholesterol, low fat emu meat.   This site contains personal testimonies and professional observations.   We encourage people to contact their family physicians regarding any health problems they may have for proper diagnosis and treatment.

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