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Styes or Eyelid Bump


The eyes are ringed with eyelashes, each hair of which springs from a hair follicle. When one of the hair follicles becomes infected, a painful and inflamed abscess appears.


A stye is an inflamed oil gland on the edge of your eyelid, where the lash meets the lid. It appears as a red, swollen bump that looks like a pimple. It is tender, especially to touch.

A styes, or hordeolum, is a common eye disorder. It can be the result of an infection and can also signify a weakness of the immune system. It can, for example, occur during any debilitating illnesses, such as measles. It typically contains Staphylococcus aureus bacteria, the cause of staph infections. When a sty develops, a small area of the upper or lower eyelid or the corner of the eye becomes red, tender and swollen. Swelling subsides gradually over a period of days after the sty develops an opening to the skin, the eyelid margin or the undersurface of the eyelid and the pus is able to drain out.

Styes often recur. What happens is that one clears up, usually within a week, but by then another hair follicle has become infected by the same bacteria and produces another stye. You should never squeeze a stye – this can spread the infection to other hair follicles.

Other possible eyelid bumps include:


The cause of a stye is often unknown, but it may develop from:

A Stye may develop when the oil gland’s pore becomes blocked. This prevents the pore from draining, and it becomes inflamed.


A stye usually starts as a sensitive, red, swollen area on the edge of the eyelid at the base of an eyelash. This turns into a bump similar to a small pimple, which usually bursts open within about 3 days.

In addition to the red, swollen bump, other possible symptoms include:


The diagnosis of a sty
is based on its characteristic appearance within the eyelid. Styes
usually resolve on their own without medical attention.


A sty usually goes away in a week or two.



Although painful, a stye rarely causes serious problems.

When the pus comes to a clearly visible head, remove the eyelash with a pair of clean tweezers and wash the eye with a sterile cloth. An antibiotic eye ointment can help prevent a recurrence.


Eye Hygiene

The key to preventing styes is scrupulous is scrupulous hygiene.
Make sure each member of the household uses his own clean face flannel and does not share one with anyone else. Do not use proprietary eyebaths, as these are not sterile and can contaminate the tears, which are the best solution for washing the eyes.

Cosmetics, such as eyeliner and mascara, can contaminate the margins of the eyelid and allow organisms to collect, predisposing you to eye infections. If you develop a stye, throw away your current cosmetics and start again with new ones after the infection has completely cleared.

If you wear contact lenses, you should be particularly careful about eye hygiene, especially with cosmetics. DO NOT wear your contact lenses while you have a stye.


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