Pink eye facts
*Also called conjunctivitis, pink eye can be caused by infectious or non-infectious diseases.
*And infected eye is highly contagious and pink eye can be caused by bacteria or virus.
*The spread of this condition can be prevented by avoiding contact with infected people and by practicing good hygiene.
*Non-infectious conditions can be caused by an allergic reaction, chemical irritants, inflammatory eye conditions or trauma.
What is pink eye?
It is caused when the membranes overlaying the whites of the eyes become infected. These membranes are called conjunctiva. Their inflammation causes pain and discomfort. The conjunctiva is a highly sensitive part of the eye. It can be infected by bacteria, virus, chemical allergens, toxic substances, and underlying diseases. Conjunctivitis caused by bacterial and viral infections is common in childhood, but they can occur in adults as well. In fact, pink eye can affect anyone at any age. Pink eye will not cause visual aberrations. Those with pink eye cannot be treated with laser eye surgery treatments such as LASIK.
Pink eye caused due to viral infections
Viral pink eye causes the eye to attain a red, inflamed disposition. The common culprit is adenoviruses. Viral conjunctivitis causes the eye to discharge a watery substance that is not green or yellow in hue. This condition is common during certain seasons such as late fall and early spring. Patients can also get viral-like symptoms such as colds, sinus infections, runny nose, etc. Viral eye infections may not require antibiotics, but patients should consult an eye surgeon at a premier clinic such as Sugarland Eye & Laser Center in Houston.
The infection must be treated and detected correctly. Viral pink eye is contagious for a period of 10 to 12 days. Those with viral conjunctivitis should be careful as as to not come in contact with others during this time. The symptoms of viral pink eye can last up to 2 weeks.
Bacterial pink eye
Conjunctivitis caused by bacteria is called bacterial pink eye. Two types of bacteria, namely Staphylococci and Streptococci, cause this condition. Symptoms include pain and swelling in the eye, itching, redness, discharge that is yellow and greenish in hue, inflammation of the lymph nodes, etc.
The discharge accumulates when the patient is at rest, such as when they are sleeping. Affected people usually get the feeling that their eyes are shut and unable to open. The eyes can be opened with a warm cloth applied to the eyes whilst slowly removing the discharge. Eye doctor consultation is needed immediately, and the initial prescription would include eye drops or ointment to control the infection.
If there are associated symptoms such as runny nose, ear ache and cough, oral antibiotics may be prescribed as well. Finally, the eye doctor also has to consider if the infection has spread to other areas of the body where symptoms are yet to appear.
By keeping up with hygienic practices, conditions such as pink eye can be warded off. It is imperative that anyone for that matter seek regular eye checkups with a qualified eye surgeon to assess the general health of their optical system.
Sugarland Eye & Laser Center leads in providing premium LASIK technologies to Houston, Sugar Land, and the surrounding region. The Center’s award-winning medical director introduced revolutionary technologies such as iLASIK to the region. This technology is used by NASA astronauts, Navy SEALS and Air Force fighter pilots. At Sugarland Eye & Laser Center, you can now receive the same treatment. For more information, please call (281) 240-0478 or visit us at www.houston-lasik.com.
About the Author
Amjad Khokhar, M.D. is Chief LASIK Surgeon at Sugarland Eye & Laser Center. Add Dr. Khokhar on Google+ here.
Pink eye facts