Healing the gaze at the morgue


A recent article explores the practice of preserving and treating the eyes of deceased individuals in mortuaries. This process, known as eye enucleation, involves the removal of the eyes from the deceased and replacing them with prosthetic ones. The article highlights how this procedure not only benefits the bereaved by providing a more peaceful and dignified appearance for their loved ones but also aids in scientific research and education.

Eye enucleation is usually performed by trained morticians or eye technicians. After removal, the eyes are cleaned, then prosthetic eyes made of acrylic or glass are placed carefully in the sockets. This allows for a natural appearance, providing comfort to the family during viewings and burials.


Beyond its aesthetic benefits, eye enucleation supports medical research and education. Eye banks collect the removed eyes and distribute them to researchers studying eye diseases, as well as to medical schools for educational purposes. The preserved eyes provide crucial opportunities to advance medical knowledge, develop innovative treatments, and train future doctors.

The article also highlights the emotional significance of eye enucleation for families. The procedure can alleviate anxiety and distress associated with viewing a deceased loved one. By restoring the appearance of the eyes, families can find solace and remember their loved ones as they were in life.

In conclusion, treating the eyes in the mortuary, through eye enucleation and the use of prosthetic replacements, brings both practical and emotional benefits. This process not only allows for a dignified appearance but also supports medical research and helps families in grieving.