What is a chalazion?
A chalazion is a blockage in a small duct in your eyelid (called the meibomian glands) that can result in a small bump and cause eyelid swelling. Each of your eyelids has small glands called meibomian glands located near the eyelashes, which produce one of the oils that lubricates your eye. When these glands cannot release their oil because their duct is blocked, the oil backs up and causes a bump.
A chalazion is not the result of an infection, although it can follow an infection of the eye. An infection of these same small ducts is called a stye, which may resemble a chalazion but is usually quite painful and tender, while a chalazion is less painful. A chalazion can grow to the size of a marble in extreme circumstances.
Some people have recurring chalazion or styes. This is a chronic condition that requires treatment. TheraLife has the perfect solution.
Each of the oil glands, called meibomian glands, produces oil that flows out of the gland into the tears to make the tears thicker. There are about 30 to 40 of these glands within each of the upper and lower lids. The oil comes out from each gland through a tiny circular opening just behind the eyelashes of the upper and lower lids of both eyes. A chalazion is caused by the oil in the gland becoming too thick to flow out of the gland or the opening of the gland being obstructed. Without anywhere to go, the oil builds up inside the gland and forms a lump or type of cyst in the eyelid. The gland wall may break, releasing the oil into the tissue of the eyelid, causing inflammation and sometimes scar tissue. Alternative names for a chalazion include conjunctival granuloma, conjunctival lipogranuloma, or meibomian gland lipogranuloma.
Chalazion vs Stye
Although a stye is also a lump in the eyelid caused by obstruction of an oil gland, a chalazion is not a stye. A stye, represents an acute infection of the gland. A chalazion is not infectious but is an inflammation of the area. Inflammation is a process in which the body reacts to a condition and produces swelling, redness, pain, or warmth. A stye is usually more painful than a chalazion and may appear infected.
Chalazion Risk Factors
Risk factors for a chalazion include a prior history of a chalazion, acne rosacea, a family history of chalazion, and oily skin.
Chalazion Symptoms and Signs
- Swelling of the upper or lower eyelid may occur gradually over weeks with chalazia (the plural form of chalazion) occurring more frequently on the upper lid.
- A chalazion appears as a localized hard lump that may grow as large as 1/8 of an inch.
- Occasionally, one may feel pain and the eyelid may be red. A chalazion of the lower eyelid may be more visible when one looks inside the lid while looking in a mirror.
Contact an ophthalmologist immediately for frequent bouts of eyelid swelling or if experiencing any of the following:
- Any visual changes (for example, blurred vision, decreased ability to see)
- Eye pain and/or drainage
- Extensive swelling or redness
Your eye doctor will take a medical history and perform a physical examination. The examination includes vision testing of each eye and an inspection of the face, eyelids, and the eye itself. In addition to examining the skin of the eyelids, an ophthalmologist may look inside the upper eyelid if the lump is in the upper lid.
- Hot Compress for 5 to 10 minutes, 4 times a day to reduce swelling and promote drainage of the gland is highly recommended. We recommend a rice baggy or a gel type of hot compress that heats up in the microwave oven
- Anti-biotics – A prescription for antibiotic eye drops or ointments if a bacterial infection is suspected.
- Steroid Injection – in the area of the lump to help decrease the inflammation
- Surgery – If a chalazion creates lasts for weeks, it may need to be surgically removed. If the swelling has lasted more than a few weeks or creates symptoms of blurry vision, your eye doctor may recommend surgery to remove the chalazion. If the appearance of the chalazion is bothersome, surgical removal may also be indicated.
Recurring Chronic Chalazia
For people with acne rosacea, oily skin or history of chalazion- chronic recurring chalazion or chalazia that can be very bothersome. They happen on a regular basis.
Recurring Chalazion Treatment
For recurring chronic chalazion, a generalized abnormality in the oil glands should be considered. This can be treated with long-term oral tetracycline or doxycycline to change the consistency of the oils produced by the glands. The use of hot compresses prior to sleep and cleaning the eye lid margins using an eye lid cleanser should be a routine procedure.
Inevitably, dry eye syndrome is involved with people with Chalazion. Therefore, dry eye relief in addition to chalazion treatment makes sense.
For the most effective recurring chalazion relief, try TheraLife Chalazion Starter Kit. This kit consists of 4 bottles of Theralife Eye, 1 bottle of Fish Oil, 1 gel hot compress and 1 Hypochlor eye lid cleanser. Keep your eye lids clean, healthy and restore your normal tear function all in one kit.
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