Care for the Ocular Prosthesis, Eyelids and Eye
The morning routine for hygiene care begins with a
thorough hand scrub, emphasis on the fingertips.
A warm wet face cloth with a 'no more tears' baby
shampoo is then applied to the eyelids since they
are normally crusted with secretion.
(This shampoo has a neutral pH and will not sting or
smart the socket tissue or the fellow eye, plus it
The warm wet face cloth will soften the secretion
allowing you to remove it by wiping inward toward
the nose. (Do not wipe outward, because this could
rotate the prosthesis out of position, or cause it
to fall out of the cavity.)
Once the lids and eyelashes are free of secretion,
you can proceed to one of the following routines for
cleaning the ocular prosthesis, while it is in the
For the person who
The water can be adjusted to a fine
spray. The sighted eye is then covered with the hand
for protection while the spray strikes the lids and
For the non-shower
A one ounce ear syringe can be used
with tap water or distilled water. The water is
sucked into the syringe.
The syringe is then held in the palm of the hand,
while the hand is in a 'hand salute' position. The
syringe is also supported by the bridge of the nose
while the tip is near the inner edge of the
The head is tipped to the side and the drainage is
caught in a face cloth or hand towel.
If you have sinus, hay fever, asthma, allergies or a
cold in you system, expect an increased amount of
tearing and secretion. This is a natural experience.
It is suggested you use a normal saline solution
which you can purchase at your pharmacy or you may
make it yourself (1Ú4 teaspoon of table salt to 1
quart of boiled water).
Keep this in a covered container at room
temperature, not in a refrigerator.
The solution is good for a week.
Irrigate three times a day until the secretions
Always carry a pocket pack of tissue and use it when
necessary to remove any secretion from the
prosthesis or lids.
The average amount of wiping is three to five times
Avoid the use of a handkerchief or bare fingers.
Never place the prosthesis in
alcohol or other harsh chemical substance, this can
damage the plastic surface and cause irritation to
the conjunctival tissue.
It is suggested the prosthesis be removed once a
month, and checked for protein deposits.Ê Protein
deposits will give the prosthesis a dull
appearance.Ê The prosthesis can be washed with a
soft face cloth with soap, liquid detergent or 'no
more tears' type baby shampoo.Ê Rinse the prosthesis
with water and reinsert.
Insertion of Ocular
Prosthesis into the Eye Socket
Caregiver to the Patient)
It is easier to insert the ocular prosthesis with
the fingers (for more control), than it is using the
suction cup.Ê Chances are the patient may blink or
squeeze the lids during this insertion process,
resulting in loss of suction and the possibility of
dropping the prosthesis.
Cleansing of the Hands
prior to Insertion
Please be advised that bacteria that frequently
causes conjunctivitis and socket infections exists
on the skin.Ê We would therefore, recommend using a
'no more tears' baby shampoo for a thorough hand
scrub with emphasis on the fingertips.Ê This shampoo
destroys bacteria and it has a neutral pH.Ê The
shampoo should also be applied with a warm wet
facecloth to the ocular prosthesis.Ê You may rub it
vigorously with the facecloth to remove any dried
protein deposits on its surface.Ê Rinse well prior
Insertion of the Ocular
Prosthesis with Fingers
Step 1. Moisten prosthesis with water or any contact
lens wetting solution for easier insertion.
Step 2. Hold the prosthesis by the outer edges with
the thumb and forefinger.Ê (The index finger will
come into use in Step 4 & 5.)Ê The black dot (left
eye) or two dots (right eye) indicate the top of the
Step 3. Have the patient look downward and, at the
same time, place your thumb or finger of your free
hand on the upper eyelid and lashes.Ê Pull the upper
eyelid toward the eyebrow.Ê This will create a large
Step 4. Bring the prosthesis up past the lower lid
and set it flush once it is partially past the lower
eyelid and touching the orbital tissues.Ê You may
now place the index finger on the front of the
prosthesis, allowing you to release the thumb and
Step 5. The index finger will continue to push the
prosthesis up and under the upper lid until it is
completely in the socket.
Step 6. In one swift motion, release hold of the
upper lid, and pull the lower lid downward, to allow
the entire prosthesis to slip into the cavity.