In this post, I will introduce you to “What is Oculoplastic and Lacrimal surgery” and tell you how this sub-speciality evolved in the UK.
The Early Years of Oculoplastic Surgery
It evolved as a sub-specialty of ophthalmology during the last three decades in the UK. In the 1970s and 1980s, there was only a small number of ophthalmologists with an interest in oculoplastic and lacrimal surgery.
Oculoplastic Surgery Takes Off
Oculoplastic surgery took off in the 1990´s with the inspiration of Mr Richard Collin at Moorfields Eye Hospital and also other world-leading teachers in the USA. They trained many fellows in the sub-speciality. Each fellow received one to two years advanced training in specialised eyelid and tear duct surgery.
Lacrimal Surgery Takes Off
Lacrimal surgery came under the oculoplastic surgeons´ umbrella. The reason is that eyelid problems can cause watering eyes- not just blocked tear ducts. Hence, oculoplastic and lacrimal surgery were natural partners.
“Oculoplastic and lacrimal surgery is a sub-specialty of ophthalmology. It focuses on the eyelids and the tear drainage system.”
Lacrimal Surgery Leaps Forwards
The main advances in lacrimal surgery came after 1995. At that time, endoscopic endonasal dacryocystorhinostomy developed until becoming standard by 2010.
The New Consultant Oculoplastic and Lacrimal Surgeon
By the 2000´s Oculoplastic and Lacrimal surgery was well established as a sub-speciality of ophthalmology on its own right. Many NHS Hospitals appointed oculoplastic consultant surgeons to look after their patients with eyelid and tear duct problems.
Private Oculoplastic and Lacrimal Surgery
Eyelid and lacrimal disorders are common and managed by the oculoplastic and lacrimal specialists. Many also work in Private Practice. At Clinica London, I see many patients with eyelid and tear duct problems. I do over 85% of my oculoplastic and lacrimal treatments and surgery under local anaesthetic. These take place in the Clinica London´s own treatment room and operating theatre.
The remaining 15% of my Clinica London patients have their surgery at the nearby Harley Street Clinic and Weymouth Clinic. These patients may need a general anaesthetic for their surgery.
Mr Leatherbarrow from Manchester´s Face and Eye Clinic visits Clinica London once a month. He sees outpatients and does small outpatient treatments and eyelid cysts. He does all his eyelid and tear duct surgeries at his Manchester private clinic.