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UK national survey of enucleation, evisceration and orbital implant trends
  1. P Viswanathan1,
  2. Mandeep S Sagoo2,
  3. Jane M Olver3
  1. 1Department of Ophthalmology, Watford General Hospital, Watford, UK
  2. 2Moorfields Eye Hospital, London, UK
  3. 3Oculoplastic and Orbital Service, Western Eye Hospital, London, UK
  1. Correspondence to: J Olver Oculoplastic & Orbital Service, Western Eye Hospital, Marylebone Road, London NW1 5YE, UK; janeolver{at}


Aim: To evaluate current clinical practice in the UK in the management of the anophthalmic socket; choice of enucleation, evisceration, type of orbital implant, wrap, motility pegging and complications.

Methods: All consultant ophthalmologists in the UK were surveyed by postal questionnaire. Questions included their practice subspecialty and number of enucleations and eviscerations performed in 2003. Specific questions addressed choice of implant, wrap, motility pegging and complications.

Results: 456/896 (51%) consultants responded, of which 162 (35%) had a specific interest in oculoplastics, lacrimal, orbits or oncology. Only 243/456 (53%) did enucleations or eviscerations. 92% inserted an orbital implant after primary enucleation, 69% after non-endophthalmitis evisceration, whereas only 43% did so after evisceration for endophthalmitis (50% as a delayed procedure). 55% used porous orbital implants (porous polyethylene, hydroxyapatite or alumina) as their first choice and 42% used acrylic. Most implants inserted were spherical, sized 18–20 mm in diameter. 57% wrapped the implant after enucleation, using salvaged autogenous sclera (20%), donor sclera (28%) and synthetic Vicryl or Mersilene mesh (42%). A minority (7%) placed motility pegs in selected cases, usually as a secondary procedure. 14% of respondents reported implant exposure for each type of procedure and extrusion was reported by 4% after enucleation and 3% after evisceration.

Conclusions: This survey highlights contemporary anophthalmic socket practice in the UK. Most surgeons use porous orbital implants with a synthetic wrap after enucleation and only few perform motility pegging.

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  • Published Online First 6 December 2006

  • Competing interests: None.

  • This work was presented at the Annual Congress of The Royal College of Ophthalmologists, UK, May 2005 and European Society of Oculoplastic and Reconstructive Surgery Meeting, Crete, September 2005.