Dr. Liu has helped thousands of individuals achieve their cosmetic goals and discover renewed confidence.
Chalazions, styes, or hordeola are chronic, cyst-like lesions that form after blockage of a meibomain gland opening with backup of lipid and then ensuing inflammation. Chalazions typically resolve with several weeks of lid margin scrubs and warm compresses, however, if these treatments are ineffective, the chalazion may require injections or surgical management. The chalazion in itself is not dangerous but it can cause surrounding infection and changes in vision that should be treated promptly.
The procedure should be scheduled for a time when you can relax for at least a few days. It is important to avoid any strenuous activity, heavy lifting, or bending down during this time to avoid complications and to promote the best healing. If you are on a blood thinning medication due to a specific medical condition, you will need to discuss this with Dr. Liu. Depending on the size of the lesion, you may need to avoid taking any blood thinning medications for at least two weeks prior to the procedure, but discuss with Dr. Liu and your primary care physician prior to stopping any medication. Dr. Liu’s staff will review a list of common medications, supplements and vitamins that can cause your blood to be thinner.
Please note that Dr. Liu expects to see patients back in the office 2 – 4 weeks after the procedure to ensure that the healing process is going as expected and that you are on track for a good result.
Selecting the right surgeon for chalazion removal is very important. When performing surgery in one of the most delicate skin areas of your entire body that also has one of the most intricate anatomy, the pool of surgeons qualified to perform such a procedure shrinks dramatically.
When dealing with any problem near the eye, you need to see a physician trained as an ophthalmologist. Many doctors are not comfortable working in that area because of the specialized anatomy and will refer you to an ophthalmologist anyway. Additionally, because this is an extraocular procedure (outside of the eye) as opposed to an intraocular procedure (inside of the eye), the best choice for any eyelid procedure is an oculoplastic surgeon (also known as an ophthalmic plastic and reconstructive surgeon).
A well-trained oculoplastic surgeon can combine their knowledge of the eye with the artistic expertise of a plastic surgeon. You need a doctor that can ensure that the procedure is done correctly, but also won’t leave an unsightly scar near your eyes. Dr. Liu is an oculoplastic surgeon and has completed an ASOPRS fellowship, making her one of the most highly qualified oculoplastic surgeons in North America.
Chalazion removal is typically performed using only local anesthesia in Dr. Liu’s procedure room. In some cases the surgery may be performed at an off-site surgery center for additional sedation, but only in very rare cases would general anesthesia be used.
It is difficult to provide pricing before a patient has had a consultation with Dr. Liu. The cost of a procedure can vary depending on what a patient needs and what the surgery will entail. More importantly, many patients come to Dr. Liu believing that they need a certain procedure, only to find out during the consultation that a different procedure will provide a better outcome. Dr. Liu believes that patients should be able to speak with their physician before experiencing any out of pocket expense, which is why consultations with Dr. Liu are complimentary.
In certain instances, an injection of a combination of an anti-metabolite and steroid can help the body break-up the chalazion faster. If a surgical removal is needed, topical eye drops and a local injection provide anesthesia to the eyelid area. A chalazion clamp is applied to the affected area and helps evert and stabilize the eyelid during the procedure. A posterior incision (on the inside of the eyelid), excision of the posterior cyst-like wall, and curettage of the involved area is performed as an office procedur. Less frequently, an anterior incision is made through the skin if the lesion is “pointing” through the skin. If the skin overlying a chalazion has become thin and damaged due to chronic inflammation, then suture wound repair is occasionally indicated. Eye patches are not typically needed. A combined antibiotic-steroid eye drop (daily use) and/or ointment (evening use) may be prescribed for one week. Ice packs should be applied the first few days following the procedure and then warm compresses can be used.
Chalazion removal typically takes about 30 minutes from start to finish.
Chalazion removal should not leave a visible scar after healed since the incision is usually on the inside of the eyelid. Non-specialized surgeons may have results with more visible scarring.
Chalazion removal is generally a very safe procedure. When considering any eyelid surgery, it is important to inform your surgeon of any abnormalities of your eyes, vision, or your general medical health. Dr. Liu requires all eyelid surgery patients to have a full eye exam with dilation completed within the last year before scheduling surgery.
It is important to remember that while all surgery carries some risks, even when performed by the most highly trained surgeon and at the best facilities. Below are some of the more common risks associated with eyelid surgery:
The likelihood of serious complications arising from the procedure is typically influenced by both the surgeon’s skill as well as the patient’s individual response to the eyelid surgery. Certain severe risks or complications can be avoided by cooperating fully and completely following your surgeon’s instructions. With patience, a willingness to cooperate, and a qualified surgeon, the complications of eyelid surgery and any associated risks can be dramatically reduced.
Please refer to the resources here for detailed pre- and post-operative instructions.