This video shows the removal of metal particle from the surface of the eye using a needle. Metal particles can occur from metal grinding and machine work … the metallic flakes have a tendency to get into hair then fall onto the cornea and stick. This quickly rusts and if not removed soon, can cause extreme pain, infection, and recurrent corneal erosions.
There are many ways to remove foreign bodies like this, though I prefer to use a blunt 18-guage needle. Before any removal you must determine several things:
a. How deep is the body. You don’t want to create a corneal perforation when you take it out!
b. Is there an infiltrate around it? Metal tends to be sterile, but if infected, may require more aggressive antibiotic coverage.
c. How much rust is there? If possible, you want to remove rust rings. However, you can cause more damage if you are overaggressive. Rust will eventually work it’s way to the surface, though the area can develop recurrent erosions.
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fbincornea.wmv (3.0 meg, Windows video file)