Medical questions & health advice by licensed doctors
"Why is my eye filled with blood when I haven't been hit my anyone or anything?"
I am a 30 year old man and recently returned from a trip to Arizona last week. I woke up two days ago to find my left eye completely filled with blood. I have not been hit or struck by anything and my eye doesn't really hurt, it just looks really bad. What would you suggest I do regarding my eye? It doesn't seem to be getting any better. Your help is appreciated.
You may be suffering from a subconjunctival hemorrhage. The conjunctiva is a clear lining that surrounds and protects the eye; beneath this surface is a fine network of capillaries. These capillaries are prone to bursting, usually in the setting of increased pressure within the eye which can occur with sneezing, coughing, or vomiting. Occasionally this can happen spontaneously as well, although this is more rare. Patients often describe finding a very red eye when they look in the mirror in the morning. Subconjunctival hemorrhages are not associated with any changes in vision, pain or difficulty with movement of the eye. Although they may look very alarming, they are actually benign. They often resolve over the course of 1 to 2 weeks as the rest of the eye slowly absorbs the blood that has accumulated in the subconjunctival layer. It is recommended that aspirin or other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen be avoided during this time as they can slow down the healing process. If this does not sound like what you are experiencing, or if you have any alarming symptoms such as pain, difficulty with moving your eye, changes in vision, fevers, or any other symptoms concerning to you, you should seek the care of your primary care physician or ophthalmologist immediately.
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