Most patients who undergo enucleation (eyeball removal surgery) are able to replace the enucleated (removed) eye with an orbital implant and a prosthesis (artificial eye). The board-certified ophthalmologists of Oculoplastic Associates of Texas work with a board-certified ocularist who is able to create and design a custom prosthesis that will very closely resemble the patient’s natural eye. The high-quality artificial eye is held in place with orbital implants that improves the fit of the prosthesis and helps the eye move naturally. Dallas and Plano residents who are unhappy with their current ocular prosthesis are encouraged to schedule a consultation at one of our offices to learn more about our modern, natural-looking options.
Orbital implants are attached to muscles and other structures in the eye socket, so they feel secure and patients retain the ability to move the artificial eye. The prosthesis is designed and placed about 4 – 6 weeks after enucleation surgery.
While most people think of glass artificial eyes, modern prosthetic eyes are made of acrylic. The prosthetic is shaped more like a shell than a ball since it is attached to the ocular implant. The iris is carefully painted on to the prosthesis to match the iris of the remaining eye.
Modern ocular prosthetics have evolved to look and move in a more natural way than previous artificial eyes. However, the prosthetic eye will not move as fast or fully compared to the natural eye. The pupil of the prosthetic eye also doesn’t change, so it may not always match the natural eye. Most patients are happy with the appearance of their artificial eye once they adjust to the new feel and look.
Over time, mucus may build up on the artificial eye and patients can use an irrigating solution recommended by their doctor to clean the prosthesis without removing it. Some patients prefer to remove their prosthesis for cleaning every 1 – 3 months or as needed.