Trauma to the eye, eyelids, orbit and facial bones can occur due to various reasons. For instance, motor vehicle accidents, bullet wounds, stab wounds, and wounds inflicted due to any other sharp and blunt objects. Trauma to the periocular structures is commonly associated with injury to the eye, facial bones, brain, chest and abdomen.
The soft tissues of the eyelids are easily damaged in many trauma patients. Commonly, the lacrimal gland, which lies under the upper outer eyelid, is injured. In addition, the muscles which open and close the eyelid, the tarsal plate (collagenous structure which provides a framework for the eyelid), the tear drainage system and the extraocular muscles can be easily damaged. Repair of these injuries is achieved anatomically and is individualized to the patient.
The bones of the orbit (eye socket) are commonly fractured when blunt or penetrating trauma take place to the head and face. The thinnest bones in the face are the floor and medial walls of the orbit. When fractured, these bones can "trap" the soft tissue in the orbit and cause double vision, a sunken appearance to the eye and numbness to the cheek. More severe trauma can fracture the bones of the forehead and cheek, which can impair visual function and cause loss of vision, double vision and painful movements of the eye. It is common to wait several days from the time of injury to repair to allow soft tissue swelling to resolve.