To compare the outcomes achieved by a series of patients treated in a stepwise fashion who presented with congenital nasolacrimal duct obstruction.
In this retrospective interventional case series, 127 patients, ranging in age from 1 month to 81 months, with 173 lacrimal systems diagnosed with congenital nasolacrimal duct obstruction, were treated in a stepwise fashion. A treatment paradigm was evaluated that prescribed probing as an initial procedure regardless of age. Those who failed probing received balloon catheter dilation. Those who failed probing and balloon catheterization received silicone intubation. Dacryocystorhinostomy was reserved for patients failing the above treatments. Clinical success was defined as complete resolution of symptoms. Success rates at each step were evaluated, and a cost analysis was performed.
Lacrimal probing was successful in 134 of 173 (76.9%) cases. Of the 39 probing failures, 32 (82.1%) were cured with balloon catheterization. All 7 cases (100%) that failed probing and balloon catheterization were cured with silicone intubation. No patient in this series required dacryocystorhinostomy.
A stepwise approach to the treatment of congenital nasolacrimal duct obstruction is a clinically and financially effective model for treatment.