Blepharitis

  • Medical Author:
    Andrew A. Dahl, MD, FACS

    Andrew A. Dahl, MD, is a board-certified ophthalmologist. Dr. Dahl's educational background includes a BA with Honors and Distinction from Wesleyan University, Middletown, CT, and an MD from Cornell University, where he was selected for Alpha Omega Alpha, the national medical honor society. He had an internal medical internship at the New York Hospital/Cornell Medical Center.

  • Medical Editor: Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD
    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD

    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD

    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.

Quick GuideCommon Eye Problems and Infections

Common Eye Problems and Infections

What is the prognosis for blepharitis?

Good hygiene (regular cleaning of the area) can control signs and symptoms of blepharitis and prevent complications. Good eyelid care is usually sufficient for treatment. Such a routine needs to be convenient enough to be continued lifelong to avoid relapses, as blepharitis is often a chronic condition. One episode, however, does not signify that one has a lifelong condition.

If blepharitis is linked to an underlying cause such as acne rosacea, treating those conditions may alleviate the blepharitis. In patients who have multiple episodes of blepharitis, the condition rarely disappears completely. Even with successful treatment, relapses are common. Taking the time to devote extra attention to good hygiene at those times may help to control the condition.

Is it possible to prevent blepharitis?

It is not usually possible to prevent blepharitis. In many cases, good eyelid hygiene and a regular cleaning routine can control blepharitis. This includes frequent scalp and face washing, using a warm compress to soak the eyelids and doing eyelid scrubs. Blepharitis is usually not contagious. Untreated blepharitis can last for many years, and chronic blepharitis can fluctuate in severity over time.

REFERENCE:

"Blepharitis Preferred Practice Pattern." American Academy of Ophthalmology.
Jackson, W.B. "Blepharitis: current strategies for diagnosis and management." Canadian Journal of Ophthalmology 43.2 (20088): 170-179.

Lemp, M.A., and K.K. Nichols. "Blepharitis in the United States 2009: a survey-based perspective on prevalence and treatment." The Ocular Surface (2009) 7:S1-S14.

Lindsley, K., et al. "Interventions for chronic blepharitis." Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. May 16, 2012.

Pflugfelder, Stephen C., et al. "Treatment of Blepharitis: Recent Clinical Trials." The Ocular Surface 12.4 (2014): 273-284.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 5/5/2016

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