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Eyelid inflammation


What is blepharitis? — Blepharitis is inflammation of the eyelids that causes redness and swelling of the lids. The symptoms might get better and then come back. But blepharitis rarely causes problems with your vision.
Blepharitis is more common in people who have certain skin conditions, including:
Rosacea – This causes redness and raised, red bumps on the cheeks, nose, chin, forehead, or eyelids.
Seborrhea – This causes redness, scaly patches, and itching, mostly on the scalp. Dandruff is a mild form of seborrhea.
What are the symptoms of blepharitis? — The symptoms include:
Eyelids that are red, swollen, and itchy
A gritty or burning feeling in the eyes
Red eyes
Crusty, matted eyelashes in the morning
Flaking or scaling of the eyelid skin (picture 1)
Is there a test for blepharitis? — No. There is no test. But your doctor or nurse should be able to tell if you have it by learning about your symptoms and doing an exam.
Is there anything I can do on my own to feel better? — Yes. You can:
Put warm, wet pressure on your eyes – Wet a clean wash cloth with warm (not scalding hot) water and put it over your eyes. When the wash cloth cools, reheat it with warm water and put it back over your eyes. Repeat these steps for 5 minutes, 2 to 4 times a day.
Gently rub your eyelids – Do this right after putting warm, wet pressure on your eyes. Use the washcloth or a clean fingertip to gently rub your eyelid in small circles.
Wash your eyelids – Use plain warm water or warm water with a drop of baby shampoo on a clean washcloth, gauze pad, or cotton swab. Gently clean any crusty material off the eyelashes and eyelids. Do not rub hard or you can cause more irritation. You can also use over-the-counter eyelid scrubs and pads.
How is blepharitis treated? — If the treatments you do on your own do not help, your doctor might prescribe:
An antibiotic cream or ointment to put on your eyelids
Antibiotic pills
All topics are updated as new evidence becomes available and our peer review process is complete.
This topic retrieved from UpToDate on: Mar 30, 2020.
Topic 83063 Version 14.0
Release: 28.2.2 - C28.105
© 2020 UpToDate, Inc. and/or its affiliates. All rights reserved.

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