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What is it?
Dacryocystitis is an inflammation of the lacrimal sac, generally caused by bacterial infection in the setting of an obstructed nasolacrimal passage.

It is most common in infants whose nasolacrimal passage has not opened normally.

In adults, dacryocystitis is the result of chronic sinusitis, facial trauma, or (rarely) neoplasm.

How does it present?
With a red mound overlying the lacrimal sac and swelling and redness of the surrounding lid tissue. A mucopurulent discharge may ooze out of the lower punctum if you press on the mound.

What to do?
Consult an ophthalmologist promptly. Treatment consists of broad-spectrum systemic antibiotics if the infection is acute. Incision and drainage may be necessary.

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The Eyes Have It
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Originally created by Jonathan Trobe, M.D., University of Michigan Kellogg Eye Center
© 2009 The Regents of the University of Michigan

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