Send to

Choose Destination
Laryngoscope. 2003 Jul;113(7):1206-9.

Medial and lateral orbital wall surgery for balanced decompression in thyroid eye disease.

Author information

Department of Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery, University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, 200 Hawkins Drive, 21201 PFP, Iowa City, IA 52242-1093, USA.



Diplopia remains a major potential complication of orbital decompression performed for thyroid eye disease. We sought to examine the effect of medial and lateral wall surgery with sparing of the orbital floor on the incidence of postoperative diplopia.


Retrospective review.


A retrospective review was made of 63 consecutive medial and lateral orbital wall surgeries (40 patients) performed between December 1996 and May 2002 for orbital decompression of thyroid eye disease.


The average patient age was 50.9 years of age (age range, 14-83 y). The studied group was predominantly female (sex ratio, 36:4). Indications were compressive optic neuropathy (34), exposure keratopathy (25), and aesthetic concerns (4). The mean time since surgery was 31.5 months (range, 3-69 mo). The medial wall was approached by a transcaruncular (59) or endoscopic (4) technique. Two patients had fat removal. The average improvement in exophthalmos was 4.1 mm (range, 0-10 mm). The average palpebral fissure improvement was 2.0 mm (range, 0-7 mm). Two patients had cerebrospinal fluid leaks during excavation of the sphenoid bone. These were diagnosed and repaired primarily without complication. New-onset diplopia occurred in four patients. Two of these patients required strabismus surgery.


A 10% new-onset diplopia rate compares favorably with other surgical series. Medial and lateral wall surgery only, sparing the floor, may reduce diplopia after surgery for orbital decompression in thyroid eye disease.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Wiley
Loading ...
Support Center