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Absorbable Implant Foreign Body Reaction Masquerading as Orbital Cellulitis

Shaughness, Gabrielle J., B.A.; Segal, Kira L., M.D.; Kahana, Alon, M.D., Ph.D.

Ophthalmic Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery: January/February 2019 - Volume 35 - Issue 1 - p e1–e2
doi: 10.1097/IOP.0000000000001267
Case Reports

Poly-DL-lactide polymer implants absorb over a period of 6 to 12 months and have been used with increasing frequency for repair of orbital fractures. The authors describe the case of a 7-year-old boy who presented with orbital inflammation 10 months following repair of a white-eyed blowout fracture with a poly-DL-lactide implant. Rapid improvement in symptoms followed initiation of oral steroids, with excellent long-term result. Clinical presentation and treatment response implicated a foreign body inflammatory reaction as the underlying etiology of symptoms. Ophthalmologists and orbital surgeons should be aware that absorbable implants can demonstrate this late idiosyncratic complication.

Delayed foreign body reaction is an uncommon complication of absorbable implants for orbital fracture repair that can be mistaken for orbital cellulitis.

Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, University of Michigan Medical School, Ann Arbor, Michigan, U.S.A.

Accepted for publication September 25, 2018.

The authors have no financial or conflicts of interest to disclose.

Address correspondence and reprint requests to Alon Kahana, M.D., Ph.D., 1000 Wall Street, Ann Arbor, MI 48105. E-mail:

© 2019 by The American Society of Ophthalmic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Inc., All rights reserved.