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J AAPOS. 2001 Jun;5(3):143-7.

Endoscopic dacryocystorhinostomy in children.

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Department of Ophthalmology, Children's Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.



Persistent nasolacrimal duct obstruction (NLDO) often requires treatment by probing, intubation, or balloon dacryoplasty. Refractory cases have been managed by external dacryocystorhinostomy (DCR), which leaves a scar; however, this procedure is generally avoided in young children. Endoscopic DCR has been successfully performed in adults and described in children. We report the success of this procedure in a series of pediatric patients.


A retrospective review of all endoscopic lacrimal procedures performed in a 3-year period was undertaken. Seventeen children (22 ducts) with persistent NLDO after at least one failed probing, with or without silicone tube placement, underwent endoscopic DCR. Follow-up ranged from 6 to 36 months, and success was defined as resolution of tearing and discharge by follow-up clinical evaluation and by parental history.


All but 2 patients (88%) with NLDO showed complete resolution of tearing and discharge. These 2 patients had recurrent symptoms after the Crawford tubes were removed and required revision endoscopic DCR. No complications from this procedure were noted.


Endoscopic DCR is a safe and effective means of treating persistent NLDO in infants and young children when simple probing, intubation, or balloon procedures have failed. The team ophthalmology-otolaryngology endoscopic approach provides a highly successful alternative for patients with a persistent distal obstruction that might otherwise require an external procedure.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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