Blepharitis (inflammation of the eyelid)

Eyes | Ophthalmology | Blepharitis (inflammation of the eyelid) (Disease)


Blepharitis is an ocular condition characterized by chronic inflammation of the eyelid, the severity and time course of which can vary.

Signs and symptoms that are associated with the chronic inflammation can be: redness of the eyelids, crusting at the lid margins, this is generally worse on waking, cysts at the lid margin (hordeolum), gritty sensation of the eye, reduced vision. Common signs and symptoms of blepharitis also include itching, irritation and burning as well as a foreign body sensation. Other blepharitis symptoms include sensitivity to light, eyelashes that grow abnormally or even loss of eyelashes.

Causes and Risk factors

Blepharitis is caused by an overgrowth of the bacteria that is normally found on the skin. It is usually due to seborrheic dermatitis or a bacterial infection. Allergies and lice that affect the eyelashes may also cause blepharitis, although these causes are less common. Blepharitis may be linked to repeated styes and chalazia. You are more likely to develop this condition if you have seborrheic dermatitis of the face or scalp, rosacea.

Complications may include styes, chalazia, injury to the eye tissue (corneal ulcer) from irritation, inflammation of the surface of the eye named conjunctivitis, loss of eyelashes and scarring of the eyelids.

Diagnosis and Treatment

The single most important treatment principle is a daily routine of lid margin hygiene. Antibiotic ointments may also be helpful. ...