Acute Dacrocystitis

This patient has an erythematous, edematous, fluctuant subcutaneous mass extending from the left medial canthus to the cheek. 

This clinical entity is consistent with acute dacrocystitis or inflammation secondary to obstruction of the nasolacrimal duct. The differential includes sebaceous and follicular cysts, cutaneous neoplasms, and sinusitis. 

Acute dacrocystitis may be complicated by vision loss, photophobia, preseptal or orbital cellulitis, meningitis, and sepsis. Treatment includes warm compresses, puncture and aspiration, and antibiotics, and may require surgical intervention if refractory to medical management. 

Further Reading

  1. Acute Dacryocystitis
  2. Dacryocystitis: Systematic Approach to Diagnosis and Therapy
  3. Figure 1 Medical Case


  1. Pinar-Sueiro S, Sota M, Lerchundi TX, Gibelalde A, Berasategui B, Vilar B, Hernandez JL. Dacryocystitis: Systematic Approach to Diagnosis and Therapy. Curr Infect Dis Rep. 2012 Jan 29. doi: 10.1007/s11908-012-0238-8. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 22286338.
  2. Bakshi SS. Acute dacryocystitis. Cleve Clin J Med. 2020 Jul 31;87(8):477. doi: 10.3949/ccjm.87a.19121. PMID: 32737045.
  3. Taylor RS, Ashurst JV. Dacryocystitis. [Updated 2020 Jun 26]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2021 Jan-. Available from:

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