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"How do you treat a pustule on the corner of an eye?"
I've had a pustule developing at the corner of my eye for nearly a week now, and it's really bothering me. I'm even worrying it could somehow damage my vision. Is this worth seeing a doctor about, or should I just wait for it to go away on its own? Or treat it myself some other way?
A pustule in the corner of the eye can develop or several reasons and it is important that you go to a doctor if your symptoms get worse, if you have blurring of your vision, or if you start to have pain when moving your eyes. There are several common causes for eyelid masses, it is useful to differentiate between masses that are painful and those that are bothersome, but not acutely painful. Painful mass: the most common cause is a hordeolum, commonly called a 'stye.' this mass is caused by the blockage and infection of an oil gland at the base of the eyelid, much like a pimple. Non-painful mass: here the common cause is a plugged lacrimal gland called a chalazion. while a chalazion can be cosmetically bothersome, it is not acutely tender. chalazia normally point inward from the inner lining of the eyelid (the conjunctiva) whereas styes usually are visible along the eyelash line. As you can see by the descriptions above, the most common cause for an eyelid mass is a blocked gland. These blockage will normally clear on their own, and when patients come to my office with either a stye or a chalazion, i recommend warm compresses to help aid in the drainage of the blockage and tylenol or ibuprofen to help with the discomfort. However, if the area does not improve after 3-4 days of this therapy, it may be necessary to try some antibiotics (either as an ointment or as a pill) especially if the pain is worsening or if the eye is becoming more swollen. very rarely surgery is necessary to drain the inflamed/infected gland.
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