I would like to ask if anyone here has had an infection and ongoing inflammation resulting from punctal plugs. In particular the brand of “Smart Plug”.
These are considered permanent plugs and are not detectable once they are inserted. I did not have any irritation for the first year or so with them, but I have now had ongoing problems for over six months and repeated visits and treatments, procedures, and aggressive antibiotics and steroid injections, etc. The doctor has attempted to flush the problem plug out of my upper tear duct, but now suspects it is still in there because the infection keeps returning.
I am unable to have a special kind of scan to see exactly what it still in there and the next step is to have an actual surgery where they cut and physically remove it. “Cannaliculitis”. The doctor is careful to tell me that this may not even completely eliminate the irritation and more surgery could be needed in the future if it still does not clear up.
I have had granular things coming out of the upper tear duct that the doctor has also had to physically remove, but it became external and was a part of the resulting irritation. The area in the center of my eye to the upper tear duct is always hard and swollen and hurts. There are various kinds of discharges from puss and blood to dry or gooey substances.
This doctor has since informed me that she has heard of other people having a problem with the Smart Plug, but not in her practice. She has also said these are all just the “side effects” and regular risks of having plugs put in.
I have read some of the other threads here on the message board about the various punctal plugs. Yet they are from years ago and none mentioned the kind of plug I have. I am looking to find more information about these plugs and the company that makes them and anyone else that finds this experience unacceptable as a normal side effect. Those of you on this message board will likely understand the concept of “pain and suffering” and can imagine the feelings of discomfort and frustration of such a thing going on and on for over six months with no clear end in sight.
Please, please comment. I am very alone in my situation and could really use some assurance if nothing else.
Thank you so much for your time, and thanks for this message board.