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Blepharitis - Causes, Symptoms & Treatment

 

Blepharitis
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Blepharitis is a chronic inflammation of the eyelids. The condition affects the skin of the eyelids, and it usually involves the part of the eyelid where the eyelashes grow (lid margins) In severe cases, it may also cause styes , irritation and nflammation of the cornea (keratitis) and conjunctiva ( conjunctivitis ). Some patients have no symptoms at all. Blepharitis is usually a chronic problem that can be controlled with extra attention to lid hygiene. However, it is sometimes caused by an infection and may require medication. Commonly, blepharitis occurs when tiny oil glands located near the base of the eyelashes malfunction. When these oil glands malfunction, bacterial overgrowth can result, leading to inflamed, irritated and itchy eyelids. Blepharitis is often a chronic condition that is difficult to treat. Although it's uncomfortable and may be unattractive, blepharitis doesn't cause permanent damage to eyesight.

Blepharitis is inflammation of the edges of the eyelids, possibly with thickening scales, crusts, shallow ulcers, or inflamed oil glands at the edges of the eyelids. Symptoms include irritation, itching and occasionally a red eye. Diagnosis is by history and examination. Acute ulcerative blepharitis is usually treated with topical antibiotics or systemic antivirals. Acute nonulcerative blepharitis is occasionally treated with topical corticosteroids. Chronic disease is treated with eyelid hygiene (seborrheic blepharitis), warm compresses (meibomian gland dysfunction), and tear supplements (seborrheic blepharitis, meibomian gland dysfunction).

Causes of Blepharitis

The common Causes of Blepharitis :

  • A bacterial infection.
  • Malfunctioning oil glands in your eyelid.
  • Seborrheic dermatitis.
  • Varicella-zoster dermatitis
  • Staphylococcal dermatitis.
  • Rosacea.
  • Chronic blepharitis has been associated with exposure to chemical fumes, smoke, smog, and other irritants.
  • A combination of factors.

Symptoms of Blepharitis

Some common Symptoms of Blepharitis :

  • Sandy, itchy eyes.
  • Sensitivity to light.
  • Loss of eyelashes.
  • Red, swollen eyelids.
  • Dandruff.
  • Watery or red eyes.
  • Itching or burning sensation.
  • Conjunctivitis (occasionally).
  • Scant, broken eyelashes .

Treatment of Blepharitis

Here is list of the methods to treat Blepharitis:

  • Apply eye drops before any eye ointment prescribed and as often as instructed by the doctor.
  • Baby shampoo or special cleansers may be recommended by your health care provider.
  • Sometimes doctor may prescribe an antibiotic cream.
  • If the blepharitis is caused by lice, the nits (lice eggs) should be carefully removed with tweezers, and steps should be taken to keep the patient free of lice.
  • Rarely, antibiotic tablets are needed if antibiotic ointment or drops do not clear an infection.
  • Sometimes steroids are used to control inflammation, but the potential side effects speak against long-term use.