How Does A Prosthetic Eye Move? An Ocularist Answers Your Questions

If you’re thinking about getting a new prosthetic eye, you’ve probably done a lot of research. Questions like how much they cost, what they look like, and how to maintain them can be some of the ways you have looked ahead on this decision.

Another thing you could be wondering about is prosthetic eye movement. How is moving an artificial eye possible? Will it look natural, along with your other eye?

How is moving a prosthetic eye different from a typical eye?

The movement of your artificial eye depends on several factors. The type of eye condition you have, your surgical history, and the surrounding muscle tissue can all affect its movement.

For example, if you have typical eye movement but would like a corneal scleral shell on the surface, you can expect the shell to move along with your eye. However, it is important to understand that prosthetic eyes and shells  do not move on their own, and eye movement may not be 100% restored. There are many factors that influence how an artificial eye can move, such as the type of surgical procedure you had.

Movement can be different if you had eye evisceration or enucleation. In both procedures, the artificial eye does not generate its own movement and would have to be supported by implants. 

  • Evisceration: Only the contents of the eyeball would be removed and the sclera remains intact, and an implant is placed inside the existing sclera. All the eye muscles that are still there before the surgery commonly would still have their movement. 
  • Enucleation: The surgeon removes the entire eyeball and replaces it with an implant. The muscles are preserved and connected to the implant. The muscles attached to the implant is what will help the movement of your artificial eye.

A surgeon is responsible for connecting muscle tissue on your eye implants. This process determines the type of movement you will have in your prosthetic eye. Unlike your natural eye with all nerves and muscles intact, your prosthetic eye will have to depend on the remaining eye structure for its movement.

During our consultations, we can provide you strategies to make your eye movement appear as natural as possible.

Video Consultation

Do you have more questions about prosthetic eye movement, or getting an artificial eye? We’d like to know your concerns! You can schedule a video consultation, or an appointment at 1-877-763-9393.

Will my prosthetic eye look and move naturally?

Our goal at Carolina Eye Prosthetics is for you to feel confident and happy with your new eye. Although a prosthesis is not without limitations, our custom-fitted, hand-painted artificial eyes should match the look of your natural eye closely.

We meet with you to discuss your needs, while taking note of all the unique details of your working eye. Want to see how a prosthetic eye can look? See this video of Katrina Quick, one of our patients:

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