Blepharitis

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Blepharitis facts

  • Blepharitis is inflammation of the eyelids.
  • Signs and symptoms of blepharitis include red, irritated, itchy eyelids, and the formation of dandruff-like scales on the eyelashes.
  • The cause of most cases of blepharitis is a malfunction of the oil glands of the lids, although allergies, infections, and systemic diseases can also cause blepharitis.
  • In many cases, good eyelid hygiene and a regular cleaning routine can control blepharitis. In other instances, medications may be required.

What is blepharitis?

Blepharitis is the medical term for inflammation of the eyelids. The word "blepharitis" is derived from the Greek word blepharos, which means "eyelid," and the Greek suffix itis, which denotes an "inflammation" in English. Inflammation is the process by which white blood cells and chemicals react to and protect us from foreign substances, injury, or infection. Signs of inflammation are swelling, redness, pain, warmth, and change in function. Blepharitis is an inflammation of the eyelids, causing red, irritated, itchy eyelids, and the formation of dandruff-like scales on the eyelashes. It is a common eye disorder with a wide variety of causes. It affects people of all ages. Although it may be uncomfortable, annoying, or unattractive, blepharitis is not contagious and does not cause permanent damage to eyesight. The condition can be difficult to manage, and it tends to recur. Another term for blepharitis is granulated eyelids. Angular blepharitis describes inflammation which primarily affects the outer corners of the eyelids.

Picture of blepharitis
Picture of blepharitis
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 12/17/2013

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