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Dr. Rick
Dr. Rick, Board Certified MD
Category: Eye
Satisfied Customers: 11303
Experience:  Ophthalmology since 1994 with Retina sub-specialty interest
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A family member got a serious eye infection in one of her

Customer Question

A family member got a serious eye infection in one of her eyes a few years back and had to use drops which contained steroids for a few weeks. Swabs were taken but the cause of the infection was never discovered. Since then she has had pain in her eye on a regular basis and seems to get minor infections on a regular basis plus during the last couple of years a raised vessel appeared in the front of her eye. She got this checked and was informed that it was fine. What I wanted to know is there anything she can do about the pain she gets. At the time she was told that this was due to a cluster of headaches which I feel was just said as they don't know why this happens plus her eyes are often weepy and irritated. Is there anything she can do as even though she has got them checked I don't think its right that she gets reacurring infections so often and in this day and age surely something can be done so she doesn't have to accept on going pain in her eye.
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Eye
Expert:  Dr. Rick replied 6 years ago.
Dr. Rick : Hi. I'm online and happy to answer your question today.
Dr. Rick :

I can understand what she is going through. I think that there are some simple things she can try at home that may help. This treatment, as outlined below, is usually used for people with dry eyes, allergies and blepharitis however, I think she may benefit from giving it a try for a month or so.

Dr. Rick :

Here is the information. Don't worry about the conditions discussed, just pay attention to the therapy reviewed.

Dr. Rick :

When it comes to allergies it is almost impossible to pin down the offending agent(s) and, therefore, treatment needs to focus on controlling the symptoms. Dry eyes are very common and can be improved by a stepwise series of therapies. First, the use of natural tears 4-6+ times/day to augment your natural tear production, if this doesn’t work then you can try temporary punctal occlusion of the lower puncta, then, if needed, temporary occlusion of all 4 puncta then, if indicated, surgical ( non-reversible) closure of the puncta. The openings to your tear drainage system are called puncta and you have one opening on each lid, near your nose.

Blepharitis is a condition where glands in the eyelids are not functioning normally. They become plugged and instead of putting out their normal clear, oily secretions, they put out thick, toothpaste like gunk. You may not be able to see this “gunk” yourself, unless it is really bad, but it shows up clearly on slit lamp examination.

The best treatment for this condition daily lid scrubs combined with warm compresses. I like to use baby shampoo for lid scrubs. In the shower, place the shampoo on your index fingers, close your eyes, raise your eyebrows (to stretch the skin on your eyelids) and scrub back and forth along your eyelashes for 3 to 5 minutes. The hot water in the shower helps to soften the plugged oils in the glands while the mechanical scrubbing with your soapy fingers removes the oils.

Baby shampoo lid scrubs will also help to wash away allergens and stimulate tear production, thereby addressing all three of your issues. Remember, this is not an instant fix. While you are waiting for the lid scrubs to have affect you can use over the counter allergy pills such as Travist, dimetapp or Zyrtec.

Should your symptoms get worse, your vision become significantly affected or things just not get better in 3 weeks or so you should have a complete eye examination by your local ophthalmologist to look for other, less common, causes of your symptoms.

Dr. Rick :

Does this make sense/

Dr. Rick :

If she is still having problems after doing this for 4 weeks, given her history, I think she should consult a cornea specialist.

Dr. Rick :

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Dr. Rick :

I guess you have stepped away from your computer even though my system shows that you are in the chat area.

Expert:  Dr. Rick replied 6 years ago.
Let me know if there are there any other concerns or issues you would like to discuss on this topic.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Hello again, from my understanding of your answer she actually has the opposite. She was told that she has too much moisture in her eyes if thats the correct phrase and she has used baby shampoo before for a few weeks to help clean the excess moisture. But i'm a bit confused, since she never had a problem before with her eyes except from being short sighted how does after getting an infection be causing so many problems since. She seems to be getting more infections since and I don't understand why she has to put up with always having pain and discomfort. It seems to me as if the initial infection has never been fully cleared. Would this be a possibility?
Expert:  Dr. Rick replied 6 years ago.
It would be extremely unlikely that she has had an infection for this long that was not able to be diagnosed on exam.
When your eyes are "dry" and irritated they make more tears....this is the "something is in my eye" mode of tear production, not the "my eye feels fine and I'm making tears to keep things moist" mode. The use of natural tears will help your eye turn off the flood of "something in my eye" tears that comes from your eyes being dry. Does this make sense?
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Sorry but you've lost me. I don't honestly see how this answers my question of why she keeps having pain in her eye and why she is getting so many eye infections.
Expert:  Dr. Rick replied 6 years ago.
I will opt out so, perhaps, someone else can better address your concerns.