Background: Lateral canthal procedures are often indicated to correct or prevent lower eyelid malposition. When determining an appropriate lateral canthal procedure, planning is essential and includes proper analysis and identification of any contributory anatomical factors. Methods: A 12-month retrospective review was performed on patients undergoing lateral canthal procedures. Important components of the preoperative examination were studied to relate patient anatomy and results. Outcomes were followed for a minimum of 5 years. Results: Of 288 consecutive lower eyelid canthal procedures, a total of 146 met the inclusion criteria. Common designated abnormal preoperative findings included a negative vector (62 percent), lid margin eversion (12 percent), scleral show (21 percent), neutral or negative canthal tilt (49 percent and 18 percent, respectively), and lateral canthus -to -orbital rim distance of more than 1 cm (11 percent). The distribution of lateral canthal procedures performed in our study population included inferior retinacular lateral canthopexy (n = 36), inferior retinacular lateral canthoplasty (n = 88), tarsal strip lateral canthoplasty (n = 15), and dermal-orbicular pennant lateral canthoplasty (n = 7). Successful outcomes were noted to be 86 percent and 91 percent according to surgeons and patients, respectively. Conclusions: Specific findings on the preoperative physical examination identify when simple or more complex lateral canthal procedures should be performed. The authors report seven key physical findings that should be documented to effectively determine a lateral canthal procedure that is appropriate for prevention and management of lower eyelid malposition.
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