Black Eye - Experience

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Black eye introduction

A black eye often results from injury to the face or the head, and is caused when blood and other fluids collect in the space around the eye. Swelling and dark discoloration result in a "black eye" sometimes called a "shiner."

Most black eyes are relatively minor injuries. Many heal on their own in a few days, but they may signify a more serious injury.

Despite the name, "black eye," the eye itself is not usually injured. The tissues around the eye may be significantly discolored and swollen without any injury to the eye itself, like a bruise (ecchymosis) around the eye.

The skin around the eye is very loose, with mostly fat underneath it and fluid accumulates easily in this area. The skin around the eye is one of the first places to swell when the facial area is injured. Depending on the location and type of injury, one or both eyes may be affected. Injuries to the eyebrow, nose, and forehead area often result in black eyes because gravity pulls the blood and inflammatory fluid into the soft tissues under and around the eyes.

As a black eye heals, the swelling around the eye decreases, and the bruise gradually fades away. The bruising will usually start out a very dark purple, and as it fades, it may change to light purple, then greenish, then yellow before disappearing.

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See what others are saying

Comment from: Barb, 65-74 Female (Caregiver) Published: November 06

My husband woke up with a distinct, bright purple marking in the corner under his left eye, near the nose. There is no pain or swelling. It's triangular in shape, right in the corner. I wonder if he could he have poked himself at night and got the black eye.

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Comment from: Jyotsna, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: December 29

I hit my head on the kitchen marble, my eye-brow at the end got injured couple of days back. There was bleeding which I wiped out with cotton and then with hand sanitizer. Later we applied turmeric powder and after sometime povidone iodine powder. One day has passed, now there is swelling below my eye which is not the affected area and it has turned black.

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