Pinkeye, also called conjunctivitis, is redness or irritation of the conjunctivae, the membranes on the inner part of the eyelids and the membranes covering the whites of the eyes. These membranes react to a wide range of bacteria, viruses, allergy-provoking agents, irritants, and toxic agents. Read more: Pinkeye (Conjunctivitis) Article
Multimedia: Slideshows, Images & Quizzes
Recognize These Common Eye Problems
Eye diseases can cause damage and blindness if not treated soon enough. Learn the warning signs and symptoms of common eye...
Childhood Diseases: Measles, Mumps, & More
Is your child at risk for these childhood diseases? Know when to call the doctor for conditions such as measles, mumps, ringworm,...
Pink Eye (Conjunctivitis) Symptoms, Causes, Treatments
How do you get pink eye? And how contagious is pinkeye? If you woke up with crusty eyelids and red, swollen eyes, you may have...
Your Face: A Window Into Your Health
What medical problems appear on your face? Look into the mirror and find out. Jaundice, glaucoma, skin cancer, and cracked lips...
10 Worst Cities for Spring Allergies With Pictures
See pictures of the top 10 "spring allergy capitals", according to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA). From...
Is It Contagious? What Diseases Are Contagious?
Is it contagious? Take this quiz to learn about contagious diseases, how contagious diseases are spread, and myths and facts...
Picture of Eye Allergies
Severe allergic eye symptoms can be very distressing and are a common reason for visits to the allergist or ophthalmologist. See...
Picture of Blepharitis
Blepharitis is an inflammation of the eyelids and occurs in two forms, anterior (outside of the eyelid) and posterior (inner...
Picture of Bacterial Conjunctivitis (Pink Eye)
Pink eye, or conjunctivitis, is redness and inflammation of the membranes (conjuctiva) covering the whites of the eyes and the...
Picture of Eye Anatomy Detail
The eye has a number of components which include but are not limited to the cornea, iris, pupil, lens, retina, macula, optic...
Picture of Eye
The eye has a number of components which include but are not limited to the cornea, iris, pupil, lens, retina, macula, optic...
Top 13 Ways to Tame Eye Allergies
Eye allergies, or allergic conjunctivitis, cause itchy eyes and other allergic symptoms. Avoiding allergens and using medicated...
IMAGES0 See Images
Related Disease Conditions
Itch (Itching or Pruritus)
Itching can be a common problem. Itches can be localized or generalized. There are many causes of itching to include: infection (jock itch, vaginal itch), disease (hyperthyroidism, liver or kidney), reactions to drugs, and skin infestations (pubic or body lice). Treatment for itching varies depending on the cause of the itch.
Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA)
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is an autoimmune disease that causes chronic inflammation of the joints, the tissue around the joints, as well as other organs in the body. Because it can affect multiple other organs of the body, rheumatoid arthritis is referred to as a systemic illness and is sometimes called rheumatoid disease. The 16 characteristic early RA signs and symptoms include the following. Anemia Both sides of the body affected (symmetric) Depression Fatigue Fever Joint deformity Joint pain Joint redness Joint stiffness Joint swelling Joint tenderness Joint warmth Limping Loss of joint function Loss of joint range of motion Many joints affected (polyarthritis)
A subconjunctival hemorrhage is bleeding under the eye's conjunctiva. There is usually no obvious cause for a subconjunctival hemorrhage, but it may be caused by sneezing, vomiting, infections on the outside of the eye, coughing, and clotting disorders. Symptoms and signs include blood in the white of the eye and a sense of fullness under the lid. No treatment is needed.
Crohn's disease is a chronic inflammatory disease, primarily involving the small and large intestine, but which can affect other parts of the digestive system as well. Abdominal pain, diarrhea, vomiting, fever, and weight loss are common symptoms.
Lupus (Systemic Lupus Erythematosus or SLE)
Systemic lupus erythematosus is a condition characterized by chronic inflammation of body tissues caused by autoimmune disease. Lupus can cause disease of the skin, heart, lungs, kidneys, joints, and nervous system. When only the skin is involved, the condition is called discoid lupus. When internal organs are involved, the condition is called systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE).
Coxsackieviruses may be divided into two groups. Type A causes hand, foot, and mouth disease and conjunctivitis, while type B causes pleurodynia. Both types sometimes cause meningitis, myocarditis, and pericarditis. There is no specific treatment for this disease.
Ulcerative colitis is a chronic inflammation of the colon. Symptoms include abdominal pain, diarrhea, and rectal bleeding. Ulcerative colitis is closely related to Crohn's disease, and together they are referred to as inflammatory bowel disease. Treatment depends upon the type of ulcerative colitis diagnosed.
Mold (Exposure) Symptoms, Tests, and Treatment Cure
Mold exposure may cause symptoms in people who are sensitive to molds. Symptoms of mold allergy include sneezing, runny nose, wheezing, coughing, redness of the eyes, and rash. Prevent mold growth by keeping indoor humidity low, between 30%-50%, using bathroom fans when showering, repairing plumbing leaks quickly, and using an air conditioner during humid seasons.
An allergy refers to a misguided reaction by our immune system in response to bodily contact with certain foreign substances. When these allergens come in contact with the body, it causes the immune system to develop an allergic reaction in people who are allergic to it. It is estimated that 50 million North Americans are affected by allergic conditions. The parts of the body that are prone to react to allergies include the eyes, nose, lungs, skin, and stomach. Common allergic disorders include hay fever, asthma, allergic eyes, allergic eczema, hives, and allergic shock.
Blepharitis is inflammation of the eyelids. Acne rosacea, staphylococcal bacteria, allergies, sensitivities to makeup or contact lens solutions, head lice, or other conditions may cause blepharitis. Symptoms and signs include itchy eyelids, burning sensation in the eyes, crusting of the eyelids, light sensitivity, red, swollen eyelids, loss of eyelashes, and dandruff of the lashes and eyebrows. Proper eyelid hygiene and a regular cleaning routine controls blepharitis.
Eye allergy (or allergic eye disease) are typically associated with hay fever and atopic dermatitis. Medications and cosmetics may cause eye allergies. Allergic eye conditions include allergic conjunctivitis, conjunctivitis with atopic dermatitis, vernal keratoconjunctivitis, and giant papillary conjunctivitis. Dry eye, tear-duct obstruction, and conjunctivitis due to infection are frequently confused with eye allergies. Eye allergies may be treated with topical antihistamines, decongestants, topical mast-cell stabilizers, topical anti-inflammatory drugs, systemic medications, and allergy shots.
Measles (rubeola) is a highly contagious disease that's caused by a virus. Symptoms include a rash, high fever, cough, runny nose, and red eyes. Treatment focuses on symptom relief. The disease can be prevented with the measles, mumps, rubella, and chickenpox (varicella) vaccine (MMRV).
Is Chlamydia Contagious?
Chlamydia is a sexually transmitted disease (STD) that is contagious. Chlaymida is spread through sexual contact. (You cannot get chlamyidia from kissing or sharing utensils or drinks.) Chlamydia is the most common STD in the U.S. The incubation period for chlamydia ranges from days to months, and the contagious period ends seven days after patients begin treatment. Chlamydia signs and symptoms may include painful urination, rectal irritation (proctitis), eye infections, and infertility. Women can also develop chronic pelvic pain, salpingitis, and endometritis.
Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)
The inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) are Crohn's disease (CD) and ulcerative colitis (UC). The intestinal complications of Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis differ because of the characteristically dissimilar behaviors of the intestinal inflammation in these two diseases.
Kawasaki disease is a rare children's disease characterized by a fever that lasts more than five days and at least four of the following five symptoms are present: rash, swollen neck lymph gland, red tongue, swelling or redness of the hands or feet, and conjunctivitis. High doses of aspirin are used to treat Kawasaki disease. Cortisone and anti-inflammatory drugs may also be used during treatment.
Trachoma is an infectious disease caused by the Chlamydia trachomatis bacteria. Symptoms and signs include redness and irritation of the eyes with tearing. Trachoma is diagnosed by examining the eyes and eyelids. Treatment involves a single dose of azithromycin (Zithromax) or the use of topical tetracycline (Achromycin) ointment. Infected individuals should be counseled about sanitation and taught simple cleanliness.
What Are Some Common Eye Infections?
An eye infection is a condition in which viruses, bacteria or other microbial agents may attack the eye. This can cause itching around the eyes or the eyes may turn pink. The infection can affect the eyelid, cornea or conjuctiva (inside lining of the eyelid).
Dry eyes are caused by an imbalance in the tear-flow system of the eye, but also can be caused by the drying out of the tear film. This can be due to dry air created by air conditioning, heat, or other environmental conditions. Treatment may involve self-care measures, medications, or rarely, surgery.
Children's health is focused on the well-being of children from conception through adolescence. There are many aspects of children's health, including growth and development, illnesses, injuries, behavior, mental illness, family health, and community health.
Onchocerciasis, or river blindness, is a parasitic disease that may cause blindness. It is transmitted by the bite of a female blackfly. Symptoms include skin depigmentation, vision loss, and itch. Ivermectin is used to treat the disease.
What Does An Eye Infection Look Like?
An eye infection may bring about the following changes in the eye: A pink tint in the whites of the eye, swollen red or purple eyelids, crusty lashes or lids, and/or discharge of fluids which may be yellow, green or clear.
Is Pinkeye Contagious?
Pinkeye (conjunctivitis) is inflammation of the conjunctiva. Whether pinkeye is contagious depends upon what is causing the irritation. With pinkeye, people may experience swollen eyelids, a pinkish color in the whites of the eyes, eye discharge, photophobia, increased tear production, and itching.
Enterovirus (Non-Polio Enterovirus Infection)
Non-polio enteroviruses cause a variety of infections, including aseptic meningitis, hand, foot, and mouth disease, herpangina, and the common cold. Symptoms and signs of enterovirus infection include hypoxia, eye pain, shortness of breath, chest pain, and fever. Treatment of non-polio enterovirus infection involves supportive care that reduces the symptoms and signs, as there are no antiviral medications approved for treatment.
Eye Care and Eye Disorder
Many common eye disorders resolve without treatment and some may be managed with over-the-counter (OTC) products. It's important to visit a physician or ophthalmologist is the problem involves the eyeball itself or the condition hasn't improved after 72 hours of use of an eye-care OTC product.
Acanthamoeba is an amoeba that lives in dust, soil, and fresh, sea, and brackish water. Acanthamoeba keratitis causes eye pain, a sensation of something in the eye, and blurry vision. Acanthamoeba causes granulomatous encephalitis, leading to seizures, hallucinations, stiff neck, nausea, and vomiting. Diseeminated infection may also result from Acanthamoeba infection.
Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever (RMSF)
Rocky Mountain spotted fever is a tick-borne disease that causes symptoms and signs such as fever, rash, headache, and muscle aches. The antibiotic doxycycline is the standard treatment for Rocky Mountain spotted fever.
Adenovirus infections are common and often have no symptoms. Adenoviruses cause illnesses like bladder infections, diarrhea, pneumonia, bronchitis, pinkeye, colds, encephalitis, sore throat, and meningitis. Signs and symptoms of an adenovirus infection depend on the type of virus causing the infection. Treatment focuses on supportive care. A vaccine against adenovirus type 4 and 7 is available only to U.S. military personnel.
Zika Virus (Zika Fever)
The Zika virus is transmitted by the bite of an infected Aedes mosquito. Symptoms and signs of a Zika virus infection include conjunctivitis, headache, joint pain, fever, rash, and muscle aches. Treatment for Zika virus infections aims to alleviate symptoms.
Occupational asthma is a type of asthma caused by exposure to a substance in the workplace. Symptoms and signs include wheezing, chest tightness, and shortness of breath. The usual treatment for occupational asthma involves removal from exposure and the use of bronchodilators and inhaled anti-inflammatory medicines.
Are You Too Sick to Work?
When you're not feeling well, it may be difficult to decide whether to stay home or go to school or work. Conditions that are very painful may prevent you from working effectively. Anyone with nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, fever, or dizziness should stay home.
What Is a Twitching Eye a Sign of?
A blepharospasm (eye twitch) is a harmless tic of the eyelid muscle, which may resolve on its own. Conditions that may cause eye twitch include blepharitis, dry eyes, light sensitivity or conjunctivitis. Nerve disorders can also cause eye twitching.
What Are the Signs and Symptoms of Allergic Conjunctivitis?
What is allergic conjunctivitis, and how do you recognize it? Learn the signs of allergic conjunctivitis and how to treat it.
Sweet Syndrome (Acute Febrile Neutrophilic Dermatosis)
Sweet syndrome (acute febrile neutrophilic dermatosis) is a skin condition that sometimes occurs due to an immune system response to RA, pregnancy, certain cancers, inflammatory bowel diseases, blood disorders, respiratory tract infections, and particular medications. Symptoms and signs include characteristic skin lesions that grow and spread into clusters. Sore eyes, high fever, mouth ulcers, headache, and aching joints may accompany the lesions. Though Sweet syndrome may resolve on its own, more severe cases may require medications like corticosteroids.
Local ResourcesFind a local Eye Doctor in your town
Treatment & Diagnosis
- Contagious FAQs
- Is Pink Eye Painful?
- How Long Does It Take for Pinkeye to Go Away?
- How Does a Person Get Pinkeye?
- Can You Go Blind from Pinkeye?
- Is Pinkeye Caused by Feces?
- What Will Happen if Pinkeye Is Left Untreated?
- Pink Eye: Facts About Pink Eye
- Children: Tips for Choosing a Pediatrician
- Killer Cold Virus (Adenovirus Strains)
- How Long Is Pink Eye Contagious?
- Pink Eye (Conjunctivitis) Audio Podcast
Medications & Supplements
- Levaquin (levofloxacin) Antibiotic
- erythromycin (Ery-Tab, PCE)
- Over-the-Counter Products
- sulfamethoxazole (Gantanol)
- fexofenadine 24-hour tablet - oral, Allegra
- fexofenadine - oral, Allegra
- tobramycin optic (Tobrex)
- Steroid and antibiotic eye drops (Blephamide)
- cyproheptadine (Periactin)
- loratadine, Claritin, Claritin RediTabs, Alavert, Claritin Hives Relief, Children's Claritin
- tetracycline (Sumycin)
- polymyxin B sulfate and trimethoprim (Polytrim)
- Ofloxacin (Ocuflox) vs. Tobramycin (Tobrex)
- chloramphenicol drops - ophthalmic
- loratadine and pseudoephedrine (Alavert Allergy & Sinus, Claritin-D, Claritin-D 24 hour)
- tobramycin and dexamethasone (Tobradex, Tobradex ST)
- bacitracin - ophthalmic
- tobramycin ophthalmic solution (Tobrex)
- fluorometholone suspension - ophthalmic, FML, FML Forte
- Contact Lens Products
- fluorometholone ointment - ophthalmic, FML S.O.P.
- Side Effects of Tobradex (tobramycin/dexamethasone)
- Side Effects of Tobrex (tobramycin)
- neomycin/bacitracin/polymyxin/hydrocortisone - topical, Cortisporin
- emedastine solution - ophthalmic, Emadine
- epinastine - ophthalmic, Elestat
- neomycin/polymyxin b/gramicidin d - ophthalmic solution, Neosporin
- Side Effects of Acular (ketorolac)
Prevention & Wellness
- Is Pink Eye a Symptom of Coronavirus?
- Are Kids' Ball Pits Jumping With Germs?
- How to Prevent and Treat Eye Allergies
- Don't Turn a Blind Eye to Vision Problems
- Health Tip: Controlling Pinkeye
- Health Tip: Soothing Pinkeye Discomfort
- Health Tip: Preventing Pinkeye
- When to Keep Kids Home From School
- Health Tip: What's Behind Allergic Pinkeye?
- Protect Your Eyes When Hitting the Pool
- ER Visits Peak When Kids Barred From Child Care: Study
- U.S. Measles Cases at 20-Year High
- Health Tip: Is it Pinkeye?
- Bob Costas's Eye Trouble Temporary, Experts Say
- Halloween Contact Lenses Can Be Horror Story for Eyes
- Tips for Preventing, Coping With Pinkeye
- Health Tip: Should I See a Doctor for Pinkeye?
- Health Tip: Identifying Pinkeye
- Health Tip: Avoid Spreading Pinkeye
- Acne Medication May Raise Risk of Eye Infections
- Pinkeye Treatment May Be on the Horizon
- How Virus Puts the 'Pink' in Pink Eye
- Health Tip: Dealing With Pink Eye
Subscribe to MedicineNet's General Health Newsletter