An infection of the eye is very common and can present in a lot of different ways. Some of these presentations can be common findings such as itching of the eyes or watery eyes which one usually does not associate with a severe eye infection. But, you may never know these common findings could be signs of a serious eye infection.
A lot of these findings can appear in various parts of your eye like you can get symptoms related to the eyelid, the clear surface that covers the outside of your iris called the cornea or the thin, moist part that lines the inside of the eyelid and outer white part of your eye called the conjunctiva. Some of the common findings that usually don’t get enough attention and could lead to a dangerous eye infection are:
– Discomfort or pain in eyes
– Foreign body sensation in the eye
– Light sensitivity which means that bright light hurts the eyes
– Burning sensation in eyes
– Painful eyelid which is tender to touch
– Watery eyes
– Irritation of eyes
– Small lumps at the base of eyelashes or under your eyelid that are also painful
– Discharge from eyes which could be clear, yellow or green
– Swollen eyelids
– Bruised-looking red or purple eyelids
– Eyes matted shut with crusts in the morning
– Blushed pink eyes with discharge
– Gradual changes in vision
– Any lump or mass felt in the eyelid
These symptoms could sometimes point towards a dangerous eye infection. Some of the common eye infections that also present with one or more of the above-mentioned symptoms are conjunctivitis, blepharitis, iritis, keratitis, endopthalmitis, etc. For the sake of your understanding, these medical terminologies are described below.
This is a form of inflammation of the eyelids that can cause crusting of the eyelids and a specific burning sensation. These crusts are dandruff-like flakes that appear along the eyelid. This can also present with redness, vision changes, and sensitivity to light. Blepharitis is commonly caused by a bacterial infection.
As the name suggests, this condition is caused by the inflammation of the conjunctiva. Conjunctiva is the clear membrane that lines the eyelid. This could be viral or bacterial and present with the symptoms of redness of the eye, itching, burning sensation, and discharge.
This is the inflammation of the colored part of the eye which is called iris. Its cause can be viral, bacterial, or fungal. This could also be associated with injuries, trauma, and auto-immune disorders. One of the symptoms of iritis is headaches which are usually ignored.
This is the infection of the cornea. As explained earlier, the corner is the dome-shaped covering of your pupil and iris. It is caused by viruses, bacteria, fungi, or parasite but, the most common source of this infection is contact lens contamination. A large percentage of people who present with keratitis wear contact lenses.
Keeping in mind the consequences or underlying cause of such minor and unnoticeable symptoms it is best that we self-evaluate ourselves and seek medical help whenever we notice anything unusual. It is better to be safe than sorry.