The Artificial Eye
The artificial or prosthetic eye will be made four to six weeks after the enucleation. Firstly, a moulding or impression of the socket must be taken. This is a painless procedure performed by a technician known as an ocularist, but it may need to be performed under sedation or anaesthesia due to the need for a cooperative child.
The new prosthetic eye is then created by a technician known as an ocularist who will delicately paint it to match the other eye as closely as possible. Your child should have their new eye within one week.
You will notice that your child’s prosthetic eye does not move as well as the other eye. Fortunately, we usually turn our entire head to look in different directions and so the reduced movement is not as noticeable as in the photos below. The wearing of spectacles in older`children can certainly disguise the artificial eye to some degree.
When your child is older, a peg may be placed between the prosthetic eye and the orbital implant to allow for a wider range of movement. The details of this can be discussed with your eye doctor at a later time.
One month following the operation.
Taking the impression.
New left artifical eye in place.
The prosthetic eye is self-cleaning and rarely needs attention. Occasionally it will need to be removed for cleaning and should be polished or replaced every year. The ocularist will advise you regarding this, but it is important to see your eye doctor as soon as possible if the eye socket becomes sore or sticky.
It would be wise for your child to wear impact resistant safety glasses when playing sport or performing tasks or jobs where there is a risk of eye injury. These are available from your optometrist and the details can be discussed with them.