Loose End of the Wire Injures the Eye

Patient's eye on arrival.

A young man falls onto a damaged fence while he was walking. A loose end of the wire of the fence penetrates the eye!

A 19-year-old man presented to the emergency department with a one-hour history of trauma to the right upper eyelid. The patient, while walking fell onto a damaged fence which had a loose end of a wire.

Past history revealed injury to the same eyelid from a coat hanger 2 years earlier.

In the ER, the patient was unable to open the eye himself. The wire penetrated, passing under the right eyelid, then through the centre of the upper eyelid, coming out through the external surface. It penetrated the eyelid’s full thickness in the direction opposite to the normal. Around 15 mm of the wire was superficial to the lid margin. The cut end (which was cut by the rescue team to free the patient) was approximately 90 mm. The cut end was wired and taped to the cheek for security.

The doctors infiltrated 1% Lignocaine, a local anaesthetic, into the upper eyelid, opened the eye manually, averted the lid, and passed out the wire through the defect. There were no abnormalities in the anterior or posterior segments of the eye. Moreover, the intraocular pressure was also normal.

The removed wire

The patient had no complications after the procedure. Post removal, the acuity increased to 6/9 and there was no intraocular penetration. He had recovered well.

after removal of the wire
Post removal

One week later, after completing a course of antibiotics, the examination was unremarkable with equal acuity bilaterally.


Wasfi E, Kendrick B, Yasen T, Varma P, Abd-Elsayed AA. Penetrating eyelid injury: a case report and review of literature. Head Face Med. 2009;5:2. Published 2009 Jan 14. DOI:10.1186/1746-160X-5-2

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Dr. Arsia Hanif has been a meritorious Healthcare professional with a proven track record throughout her academic life securing first position in her MCAT examination and then, in 2017, she successfully completed her Bachelors of Medicine and Surgery from Dow University of Health Sciences. She has had the opportunity to apply her theoretical knowledge to the real-life scenarios, as a House Officer (HO) serving at Civil Hospital. Whilst working at the Civil Hospital, she discovered that nothing satisfies her more than helping other humans in need and since then has made a commitment to implement her expertise in the field of medicine to cure the sick and regain the state of health and well-being. Being a Doctor is exactly what you’d think it’s like. She is the colleague at work that everyone wants to know but nobody wants to be. If you want to get something done, you approach her – everyone knows that! She is currently studying with Medical Council of Canada and aspires to be a leading Neurologist someday. Alongside, she has taken up medical writing to exercise her skills of delivering comprehensible version of the otherwise difficult medical literature. Her breaks comprise either of swimming, volunteering services at a Medical Camp or spending time with family.


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