Congenital Anophthalmia (Lack of Eye), Microphthalmia and Its Treatment

The development of the eye may slow down or stop completely in some cases in the womb. In this case, the eye size may be smaller than normal at birth (microphthalmia) or the eye may not form at all (anophthalmia). There are various genetic and environmental factors that cause this condition. The first question in the minds of the family, who first encountered this painting, is whether the eye can see it or not. In microphthalmic eyes, the visual potential of the eye is evaluated by the examination findings of the eye. In anophthalmic eyes, there is no expectation of vision. Even if the eye does not have the potential to see, its own volume and size are stimulating factors for the development of bone around the baby’s eye. In babies with small or no eyes, bone development around the eyes slows down and stops. For this reason, as the baby grows, facial bone development retardation and facial asymmetry occur. For this reason, it is necessary to provide and stimulate the bone development of the orbital orbit by making interventions in small eyes or in the orbital socket with no eyes from the early period. For this, the oculoplastic surgeon should evaluate the orbital socket and arrange the treatment plan. This treatment process is a process that requires long-term care and attention of the patient and family, and requires effort for both the physician and the family. The cases undergo several sessions of surgical intervention with various implants. Generally, after 2-3 operations, patients come to the stage of wearing prosthesis, and this process positively affects bone development and thus cosmetic improvement.

Dr. The 3 most frequently asked questions to Onur Konuk about congenital anophthalmia, microphthalmia and its treatment:

1. My baby does not have one eye from birth. I was told that implants were necessary to enable facial development. What path should I follow?

First of all, since these surgeries are performed under general anesthesia, various x-rays and blood tests are required to show that there is no problem in the baby’s additional organs or tissues. Various implants are used to widen the eye socket when the tests are normal. These are divided into fixed volume implants, inflatable implants and self-inflating implants and are used in line with the current findings of the baby. With the implants used, as the eye socket grows, the implants placed under general anesthesia are enlarged repeatedly until they reach a certain volume and size. In this way, normal facial development can be achieved.

2. Could there be problems related to the implants?

Yes. We use implants to open new cavities in the baby who is born without an eye and therefore the eye socket is not developed. However, the body tries to close the newly opened gaps in itself. For this reason, it is necessary to use implants of appropriate size and shape in order to keep this created cavity always filled.

3. What is done after enough nests are formed?

In patients with sufficient orbit and eye space, a prosthesis suitable for this space is made. This procedure does not require anesthesia. It is applied by prosthetic technicians in prosthetic laboratories.