The Effect of Canthotomy on Blood Perfusion During the Repair of Lower Eyelid Defects

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


PURPOSE: Canthotomy is frequently used to mobilize extra tissue when repairing larger lower eyelid defects. The aim of this study was to explore the effect of canthotomy on blood perfusion and oxygen tension.

METHODS: Eight pigs underwent a wedge resection of the lower eyelid and canthotomy (with cantholysis involving the lateral palpebral artery). The wedge resection was performed 8, 6, and 4 mm from the canthotomy. Perfusion and oxygen tension were monitored in the eyelid between the wedge resection and canthotomy using laser Doppler velocimetry and a Clark electrode. Verapamil was administered, and measurements were also performed 12 hours after surgery, to investigate the possible effects of vasospasm RESULTS:: The wedge resection alone did not affect perfusion. Canthotomy led to a reduction in perfusion; being 60% when the length of remaining eyelid was 8 mm, 32% when it was 6 mm, and 24% when it was 4 mm. Similar results were observed for oxygen tension. Vasospasm did not affect the results.

CONCLUSIONS: Canthotomy in combination with a wedge resection of the lower eyelid affects blood perfusion. A smaller length of remaining eyelid tissue will have less perfusion. This may not have any implications in cases of direct closure, but may play a role when the eyelid is to provide oxygen and nutrients to avascular grafts.


External organisations
  • Skåne University Hospital
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Ophthalmology
Original languageEnglish
JournalOphthalmic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 2019 Nov 13
Publication categoryResearch