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- Patients with various lesions of the head and neck may have compromise of facial nerve function.
- Facial nerve (CN VII) has various roles, including movement of facial muscles and, importantly, eye closure.
- When facial nerve is sacrificed or damaged during a surgical cases, steps are often taken intraop to surgically correct the deficit and allow eye closure. However, these patients may not immediately realize the benefit of these interventions.
- In the postop period, appropriate eye care is critical to prevent exposure keratopathy due to inability to close eye.
- Exposure keratopathy is damage to the cornea that occurs primarily due to prolonged exposure of the ocular surface to the outside environment. It can lead to ulceration, microbial keratitis, and permanent vision loss from scarring.
quality improvement, facial nerve, moisture chamber, keratopathy, patient education
Medicine and Health Sciences | Ophthalmology | Otolaryngology
Rimmer, MD, Ryan; Bogdan, MD, Lauren; Epps, MD, Gregory; Hjelm, MD, Nikolaus; and Reilly, MD, Erin, "Moisture Chamber for Eye Care after Facial Nerve Injury" (2019). House Staff Quality Improvement and Patient Safety Conference (2016-2019). Poster 108.