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Conjunctivitis

Conjunctivitis, commonly known as “red eye”, is an inflammation of the conjunctiva (the outer transparent membrane, which covers the white part/layer of the eye called the sclera).

ConjunctivitisConjunctivitis

 There are three types of conjunctivitis:
• Viral
• Allergic
• Bacterial
Each requires a different treatment. Apart from of the allergic type, conjunctivitis is epidemic (contagious). The viral form commonly associated with respiratory infections, colds or a sore throat.
The allergic type occurs more frequently in allergic patients and the symptoms are usually seasonal. Allergic conjunctivitis may also be caused by sensitivity to substances such as cosmetics, perfumes, detergents and drugs.
Bacterial conjunctivitis is often caused by bacteria such as staphylococcus and streptococcus. The severity of inflammation depends on the type of the infected bacteria.

Conjunctivitis diagnosis

A slit lamp examination may show the condition on the conjunctiva. In case of microbial conjunctivitis, the ophthalmologist can collect substance from the tissue, in order to determine the type of the microbe that infected the eye.

Conjunctivitis symptoms

Viral conjunctivitis
• earing
• Redness
• Irritation
• Inflammation may start at one eye, but easily can be transmitted to the other eye also.

Allergic conjunctivitis
• Usually affects both eyes
• Itchy eyes
• Swollen eyelids
• Irritation

Bacterial conjunctivitis
• Mucopurulent discharges
• Eyelids’ agglutination (usually after sleep)
• Swollen eyelids
• Redness
• Tearing
• Irritation (foreign body sensation)
• Usually affects only one eye, but it can be extended to the other eye also, especially due to bad hygiene conditions.
The appropriate treatment depends on the cause of the condition.
The allergic type can be treated by using cool compresses and artificial tears, in order to alleviate the symptoms and moderate inflammation.
In more severe cases, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory and antihistaminic eye drops are required. Some patients who have chronic and persistent allergic conjunctivitis may be treated by using cortisone eye drops.
Bacterial conjunctivitis is usually treated by antibiotic drops and ointments that cover a wider range of microbes.
Like the common cold, there is no cure for viral conjunctivitis. However, the symptoms can be alleviated by cool compresses and artificial tears (found in most pharmacies). For more severe cases, steroid drops can help to alleviate the discomfort and inflammation. Viral conjunctivitis usually heals by itself within 3 weeks.

Conjunctivitis prevention by infection


To prevent infection, you must follow the following:
• Disinfection of suspect surfaces, such as door handles, benches and other surfaces by using antiseptic solution.
• Avoid swimming (some bacterias can be transmitted through water)
• Avoid face contact using hands (personal use of towels and sheets at home).
• Avoid reuse paper tissue or handshake.

 

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