A corneal abrasion may be a scratch or cut (abrasion) of the clear outer layer (cornea) of the attention. Injury (trauma) is the most common cause for corneal abrasions. The most common trauma causes are:
Ø Scratches from fingernails (human and animal).
Ø Foreign objects hitting the cornea (eg, dirt, wood splinters, metal shavings, plants, tree branches, etc).
Ø Curling irons.
Ø Excessive rubbing of the eye.
Ø Overexposure to ultraviolet light.
Ø Arc welding light exposure.
Ø Over wearing of contact lenses.
Ø Ill-fitting contact lenses.
Ø Torn contact lenses.
Ø Makeup brushes.
Ø Paper cuts.
Ø Chemical burns.
Ø Irregular eyelashes rubbing the cornea or falling off into the eye.
Other causes include underlying eye conditions, such as:
Ø Inability to fully close the eyelids.
Ø Abnormalities of the lid position.
Ø Severe dry eye conditions.
Ø Severe, chronic blepharitis (inflamed eyelids).
Who's at risk?
Corneal abrasions are fairly common. Those who wear contact lenses or add dusty, dirty, windy, or debris-laden areas are more likely to urge a corneal abrasion.
Signs and Symptoms
Although it's very difficult to ascertain a corneal abrasion with the eye , you've got to be suspicious of this if you've got experienced any of the causes of trauma mentioned above. Along with that's the unrelenting painful feeling that something is in your eye that just won't wash out, plus:
Ø Lots of watery tearing.
Ø Sensitivity to light (especially bright light).
Ø Blurry vision.
Ø Redness of the eye.
Ø Spasm of the muscles surrounding the eye resulting in squinting.
Most simple corneal abrasions will heal on their own within each day or two at the most. Other things that help include:
Ø Keeping the eye shut.
Ø Never rubbing the injured eye.
Ø Immediately removing a contact lens. Contact lens wearers should have a back-up pair of glasses for when contact lenses should not be worn.
Ø Using artificial tears to bathe the eye.
Ø Using clean water to rinse the eye and wash out suspect foreign matter.
Ø Using sunglasses to reduce light sensitivity.
There are precautions that you simply can fancy prevent getting a corneal abrasion. These include:
Ø Wearing protective eyewear for all conditions that might result in a corneal abrasion, such as working around the garden, working on grinding machines, etc.
Ø Being extra careful when using makeup brushes and curling irons.
Ø Taking excellent care of and using excellent hygiene with contact lenses.
Ø Never sleeping in contact lenses, regardless of manufacture notes.
When to Seek Medical Care
Ø Persistent pain beyond the first day or pain that is increasing despite self-care.
Ø You suspect that a piece of metal, wood, or plant material hit the eye with high speed and may have penetrated the eye, not just irritated it.
Ø Any abrasion caused by chemicals, heat burn, makeup brushes, or plant materials.
Ø You suspect that a foreign object really is stuck in your eye.
Ø Recurrence of the pain and other symptoms days after the initial injury.
Ø Mucoid or pus-like discharge.
Ø No improvement with self-care after 24 hours.
Ø Progressive vision loss.
Treatments Your Physician May Prescribe
After assurance that there's nothing more serious than an abrasion, your doctor will presumably tightly patch the attention for each day or two after instilling an anesthetic drop and antibiotic ointment. Very tight patching is indicated for those abrasions that are felt to be essentially clean. Otherwise, patching may not be done. Your doctor can also clean and sweep (débride) the world of the abrasion to get rid of any possible dirty or contaminated tissue. If there's an underlying basis for the abrasion, look after this is often needed to stop recurrence. If the abrasion was contact-lens–related, you may be required to be reevaluated regarding your contact lenses as to fit and type. If the matter is recurrent erosion, your doctor will begin specific treatment for that condition.
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