Background/aims: The aim of the study was to compare surgical outcomes of external dacryocystorhinostomy (DCR) with and without silastic intubation for treatment of primary uncomplicated nasolacrimal duct obstruction (NLDO).
Design: The study was a prospective randomised trial conducted at the Tilganga Eye Centre (Kathmandu, Nepal).
Methods: One-hundred consecutive patients with uncomplicated primary NLDO were randomly assigned into two groups (44 underwent DCR with silastic intubation and 56 underwent DCR without intubation). Patients were re-assessed at 1 week, 6 weeks and 6 months after surgery. Success was defined objectively by irrigation of the puncta without regurgitation and subjectively by the absence of epiphora or discharge.
Results: The success rate at 6 months was 90% for DCR with silastic intubation and 87% for DCR without silastic intubation. There was no statistically significant difference between the two groups (p = 0.77). No complications were encountered in either group. Silicone tubes increased surgical cost by 20% at the Tilganga Eye Centre.
Conclusion: DCR without silastic intubation is less expensive than DCR with silastic intubation in primary uncomplicated NLDO, and has a similar success rate. DCR with silastic intubation may create increased burden for patients in the form of more post-surgical follow-up visits. In cases of uncomplicated primary NLDO, the use of silastic intubation in DCR may be unnecessary.
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Competing interests None declared.
Provenance and Peer review Not commissioned; not externally peer reviewed.
Ethics approval Ethics approval was obtained from the Tilganga Eye Centre ethical review committee.
Patient consent Obtained