Zocdoc Answers

Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors

"What to do about sore eyelids?"

ZocdocAnswersWhat to do about sore eyelids?


My wife was sitting watching TV and out of no where her left eye was hurting. She says it feels like something is in it. We checked it and flushed water and nothing. She says it doesn't hurt when her eyes are open only when she closes them. Her eye is red. She says its on the underside of her eyelid. However, when she touched the area where it hurts, the top of her eyelid is also sensitive. The vein of her eyelid is also more prominent so she thinks it might be a broken vessel. Is there anything we can do? We've already gently swabbed the area underlid. Should we flush with something?


I strongly recommend that you go to see an eye doctor right away. If you cannot get in to see your eye doctor, then an emergency room might be a good alternative to get a quick eye examination. The way you are describing the symptoms, which include sudden onset of pain and redness, make the likelihood of a foreign body in the eye, or trauma to the surface of the cornea, very likely. This can occur quite suddenly and often by accident. For example, there are many instances of people accidentally scratching their corneas with their fingernails when raising their hands or rubbing their faces or eyes. Your eye doctor or emergency room doctor will be able to examine her wife's eye closely, probably using a special lamp called a slit lamp or a special dye that glows in the dark and causes any foreign bodies or corneal scratches to show up more readily. At the same time, they will be able to rule out other types of eye conditions, such as an infection, or acute glaucoma of the eye. Based on what they find, they will recommend an appropriate treatment, which will likely involve medicated eye drops. Go see the eye doctor right away!

Zocdoc Answers is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor (in the United States) 911 immediately. Always seek the advice of your doctor before starting or changing treatment. Medical professionals who provide responses to health-related questions are intended third party beneficiaries with certain rights under Zocdoc’s Terms of Service.