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  • Written By:
    Oculoplastics/Orbit

    This retrospective study assessed the ophthalmic and periocular injuries caused by facial dog bites in children.

    Study design

    The review evaluated children under the age of 18 years old who were treated at a large pediatric tertiary hospital between 2003 to 2014. Data was collected on the type of injury, surgery, and complications.

    Outcomes

    Investigators examined records from 1,989 children between the ages of 2 months and 17 years old who sustained dog bites. Of the 1,414 patients who had facial injuries, 230 (16%) had ophthalmic injuries. Eyelid injuries were the most common (99%), followed by canalicular system wounds (20%).

    Nearly half (44.7%) of patients with ophthalmic injuries underwent surgical repair in the operating room. Complications occurred in 14% of patients with ophthalmic injuries, which included epiphora, eyelid ptosis and prominent scaring. Thirteen patients (5.7%) required revision surgeries. 

    Limitations

    This study is limited by its retrospective nature, but its information and design were robust.

    Clinical significance

    This report shows that patients sustain periocular injuries in approximately 1 in every 6 dog bites involving the face. Complications and the need for revision surgery is relatively common in pediatric facial dog bites and should be discussed with patients prior to initial repair.