Chalazion: is a small bump in the eyelid caused by a blockage of a tiny oil gland. A chalazion develops in the glands that produce the fluid that lubricates the eye. These are called Meibomian glands. The eyelid has approximately 100 of these glands, which are located near the eyelashes.
A chalazion is caused by a blockage of the duct that drains one of these glands.
Q: What are the symptoms?
A: Eyelid tenderness, Increased tearing, Painful swelling on the eyelid, Light sensitivity
Q: What are the signs and test to determine a chalazion?
A: An exam of the eyelid confirms the diagnosis. Rarely, the Meibomian gland duct may be blocked by a skin cancer. If this is suspected, you may need a biopsy.
A chalazion will often disappear without treatment in a month or so.
The primary treatment is to apply warm compresses for 10-15 minutes at least four times a day. This may soften the hardened oils blocking the duct, and promote drainage and healing.
If the chalazion continues to get bigger, it may need to be removed with surgery. This is usually done from underneath the eyelid to avoid a scar on the skin.
Antibiotic eye drops are usually used several days before and after the cyst is removed. However, they are not much use otherwise in treating a chalazion.
Steroid injection is another treatment option.
A chalazion will usually heal on its own. The outcome with treatment is usually excellent.
Q: What are complications of a chalazion?
A: A large chalazion can cause astigmatism, due to pressure on the cornea. This will get better when the chalazion is treated.
Q: What can I do to prevent a chalazion?
A: Properly cleaning the eyelid may prevent the condition from returning in people who are prone to getting a chalazion. Cleaning the eyelash area with baby shampoo will help reduce clogging of the ducts.