One type of treatment is dacryocystorhinotomy, in which the bone leading from the lacrimal sac to the nose is removed under general anesthesia. The procedure can be performed either from outside, in which case a small scar remains, or from inside through the nose. In both cases, the normal anatomy is altered.
An alternative is the newer method of dacryoplasty where a balloon catheter is inserted into the tear duct and slowly inflated to dilate the vessel. This minimally invasive treatment preserves the normal anatomy and the tear duct is virtually repaired. It is performed under local anesthesia on an outpatient basis and the patient can usually return to work the next day. The patient can usually return to work the next day.
Both methods have their advantages and disadvantages. Most of the time we recommend to start with a dacryoplasty because the method is minimally invasive.