Dacryocystitis is the medical term for the infection that occurs within the tear ducts of the eye. The infection might also occur within in the tear sac, also called as the lachrymal sac.
Tear duct is the small opening present at the inner corner of each upper and lower eyelid. The function of tear duct is the transportation of the tears to the eye.
Tears help in the effective rinsing of the eyes. It is the lachrymal gland that produces the tears and it is stored in the lachrymal sac. Tear duct actually is the tubular connection between the lachrymal sacs and the inside of your nose.
Tear duct get infected when it becomes blocked. Blockage leads to the breeding of bacteria within the duct or the lachrymal sac. Any blockage within the nasal cavity might also lead to tear duct infection and result in excessive tearing from the eyes.
Though any one is prone to develop tear duct infection, it is more commonly found in infants. Some babies are born with a congenital obstruction in their naso-lachrymal duct. Such babies are found to have a narrow drainage passageway.
In most cases it will get widened naturally as the kids grow up. By, the time the child is one year old, they mostly outgrow this disorder.
In adults, tear duct infection is mainly due to the abnormal growth of the surrounding bone. The ducts are not flexible enough to flush out the debris that gets collected within them.
This leads to blockages within the tear duct. Any trauma that happens to the nose or eye also blocks the tear duct. Broken nose and nasal polyps often makes the tear duct blocked.
The initial stage of infection is termed as acute dacrocystitis. It is advisable to consult an eye specialist and get the tear duct infection treated in order to prevent it from developing into chronic dacrocystitis.