A stye, also known as a hordeolum, is a bacterial infection of an oil gland in the eyelid. This results in a red tender bump at the edge of the eyelid. The outside of the inside of the eyelid can be affected.
The cause of a style is usually a bacterial infection by Staphylococcus aureus. The internal ones are due to infection of the meibomian gland while the external ones are due to an infection of the gland of Zeis. A chalazion, on the other hand, is a blocked oil gland without infection. They are typically in the middle of the eyelid and not painful
Signs and symptoms:
The first sign of a stye is a small, yellowish spot at the center of the bump that develops as pus and expands in the area.
Other style symptoms may include:
-A lump on the top or bottom eyelid
-Localized swelling of the eyelid
-Crusting of the eyelid margins
-Burning in the eye
-Droopiness of the eyelid
-The scratchy sensation on the eyeball (itching)
-Mucous discharge in the eye
-Irritation of the eye
-Discomfort during blinking
-The sensation of a foreign body in the eye
Stye complications occur in very rare cases. However, the most frequent complication of styes is progression to a chalazion that causes the cosmetic deformity, corneal irritation, and often requires surgical removal. Complications may also arise from the improper surgical lancing, and mainly consist of disruption of lash growth, lid deformity or lid fistula. Large styles may interfere with one's vision.
Styes are most commonly caused by the blocking of an oil gland at the base of the eyelash. Styes are experienced by people of all ages. Styes can be triggered by poor nutrition, sleep deprivation, lack of hygiene, lack of water, and rubbing of the eyes. Styes often result from a Staphylococcal infection in the eye and can be secondary to blepharitis or a deficiency in immunoglobulin. Sharing of washcloths or face towels should be curtailed to avoid spreading the infection between individuals.
Most cases of styes resolve on their own within one to two weeks, without professional care. The primary treatment is the application of warm compresses. As a part of self-care at home, people may cleanse the affected eyelid with tap water or with a mild, nonirritating soap or shampoo (such as baby shampoo) to help clean crusted discharge. Cleansing must be done gently and while the eyes are closed to prevent eye injuries.
People with styes should avoid eye makeup (e.g., eyeliner), lotions, and wearing contact lenses since these can aggravate and spread the infection (sometimes to the cornea). People are advised not to lance the style themselves, as serious infection can occur. Pain relievers such as acetaminophen may be used.
Surgery is the last resort in stye treatment. Styes that do not respond to any type of therapies are usually surgically removed. Stye surgery is performed by an ophthalmologist, and generally under local anesthesia. The procedure consists of making a small incision on the inner or outer surface of the eyelid, depending on if the stye is pointing externally or not.
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