A 34-year-old previously healthy Hispanic male presented to the emergency room complaining of progressive left upper eyelid swelling and pain for more than 2 weeks. He was previously diagnosed and treated for a "pink eye" but failed to improve. He reported a previous "bug bite" around the left lateral canthus a few weeks prior to admission. Computer tomography orbit with contrast showed left exophthalmos, an enhancing left lacrimal gland and orbital inflammatory signs suggestive of possible intraorbital abscess. Intravenous antibiotics did not improve his symptoms. Surgical debridement showed no abscess but inflamed soft tissues and lacrimal gland. Intravenous steroids failed to improve his symptoms. On postoperative day 3, the patient reported that an insect had "jumped" out from his left orbit. Identification of the specimen proved to be a mature flea. Biopsy of the lacrimal gland showed degranulation of eosinophils and foreign body material consistent with probable insect leg parts.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)e115-e118
JournalPlastic and Reconstructive Surgery
Issue number4
Early online dateApr 13 2018
StatePublished - Jul 1 2018


  • Journal Article
  • Animals
  • Orbital Diseases/etiology
  • Humans
  • Lacrimal Apparatus Diseases/etiology
  • Siphonaptera
  • Adult
  • Male
  • Insect Bites and Stings/complications

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology
  • Surgery


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