Upper Eyelids Infection Symptoms
One of the most common types of upper eyelid infection is known as stye. A stye is the infection of the sebaceous glands of Zeis which are located at the base of the eyelashes or it can occur when the apocrine sweat glands of Moll become infected. The infection of eyelid looks like a small red bump situated underneath the lid. The eyelid bacterial infection is visible on the outside due to the fact that the affected area becomes red and swollen. This type of infection does not normally produce lasting damage but they tend to be painful.
The common symptoms of the infection of eyelid are acute and do not last too long, usually less than 10 days if no treatment is administrated. Patients usually experience general redness, tenderness and pain in the area that is affected. Also, they describe their eyes as irritated and “scratchy”. If no treatment is given other symptoms may appear such as swelling, sensitivity to light, watering of the eye and pain when blinking. The first sign of an eyelid bacterial infection is a small, yellowish spot that appears at the center of the bump.
Swollen eyelid infections are usually caused by a bacterial infection with Staphylococcus aureus. Eyelid infections can occur in both children and adults and they can be triggered by different agents. Sometimes styes are caused by poor nutrition or a simple rubbing of the eyes. The staphylococcus bacteria can be spread by using the same razor to shave hair near the eyes and a mustache and it can ultimately lead to styes and other infections of the eyes. Sharing washcloths or face towels is not recommended because it can help spreading the bacteria from an infected individual to healthy individuals.
There are different treatment options available for eyelid infections. A stye will last for one week the most if the right treatment is followed and up to two weeks with no treatment. In any case, it is recommended that an eyelid infection is treated as soon as the first signs appear in order to avoid potential complications and that the infection will spread to the eye. Patients often receive medication to ease the discomfort and pain while the infection is treated with antibiotics. These may include erythromycin, chloramphenicol or amoxicillin. Swollen eyelid infections are treated with chloramphenicol successfully in many parts of the word but the American doctors are careful in using it due to concerns about plastic anemia. In rare cases, plastic anemia can be fatal. Erythromycin is on the other hand also widely used to treat this type of eyelid infections because it also helps preventing further infections. The disadvantage of using erythromycin is that it is poorly absorbed when used topically. A newer topical eye drop called Azasite is a form of Azithromycin which seems to be effective in penetrating the eyelid and curing infection and thus, it can become a topical treatment for styes in the future.
It is mandatory that the upper eyelid infection treatment is followed as soon as the first symptoms have appeared because it can lead to unwanted complications.