Blocked Tear Duct (Nasolacrimal Duct Obstruction)

Watery eyes in young children are often caused by a problem with the tear drainage system (nasolacrimal system) of the eye.

Normal drainage of tears

The surface of the eye is very sensitive and is protected by the tear film. The tears normally drain down small channels called canaliculi on the inner part of each eyelid into a tear sac. From the tear sac they flow down the nasolacrimal duct into the nose.

What are the signs and symptoms of Nasolacrimal duct obstruction?

When the nasolacrimal duct is obstructed or blocked, it may cause:

  • Tears to run down the cheeks
  • A sticky discharge to develop
  • Swelling and redness of the lower lid.

What causes Nasolacrimal duct obstruction?

The most common cause of a nasolacrimal duct obstruction is a membrane blocking the nasolacrimal duct. 

How is a Nasolacrimal duct obstruction treated?

There are different stages in the treatment of nasolacrimal duct obstruction to encourage tear flow and tear duct development. The Ophthalmologist at Western Sydney Eye Doctors will discuss all treatment options and stages with you during your appointment.