Treatment for corneal abrasion includes use of eye drops, painkillers, and eye patches. Scroll down to know about home remedies for this corneal injury.
Corneal abrasion occurs when the cornea (an important part of the eye) gets injured due to exposure to a foreign object such as dust and dirt, sand, metal particles and wood shavings. A scratch on the cornea is a minor issue in which only the outer layer of the cornea is affected. However, a large corneal abrasion is serious as the wound affects the inner thick layer of the cornea, and may even damage the eyesight.
Treatment will be given considering the severity of the wound. The doctor will examine the affected eye thoroughly to evaluate the nature of the injury, and accordingly decide the course of the treatment.
Eye Drops: For a minor injury, use of antibiotic eye drops is sufficient to heal small corneal abrasions within a short duration ( 2-3 days). These antispasmodic eye drops, have shown to ease the discomfort and pain in the eyes. Steroid eye drops and painkillers are also administered to relieve eye inflammation.
Eye patches: If the corneal injury is severe and has penetrated into the cornea, then along with eye drops, eye patches (pressure dressing) over the affected eye are also recommended. Frequent visits to the doctor are also essential to evaluate the wound healing activity.
Tetanus Vaccination: An ophthalmologist may also advice the patient to take a tetanus vaccination in case a foreign body (metal particles) is responsible for causing the injury. Tetanus vaccine helps to prevent development of bacterial infection from a corneal injury.
Surgery: In some cases, the wound heals, leaving a severe scar on the surface of the cornea leading to impaired vision. In such circumstances, a laser procedure is used to remove scarring.
One can always use clean water to remove a foreign object that is causing a lot of irritation to the eye. An eye cup can be extremely useful to thoroughly rinse the eye. Or else one can use hands to pour water, to flush off dust particles. Another way to treat this eye problem is to fill clean water in a large vessel and then dip the head into it, keeping the eyes open. You can also blink the eyes, to wash off the object. A saline solution can also be a good option to rinse the eye.
Symptoms of this corneal injury include pain and discomfort in the eye, especially while blinking. A false perception of something solid in the eye is a sign of corneal injury. Other symptoms include:
- Blurred vision
- Tearing of the eye
- Watery eye
- Eye discomfort due to exposure to bright light
- A portion of white part of the eye becomes red; small blood vessels can be seen;
- Sensitivity to light
Recurrent Corneal Abrasion
This is an eye disorder in which the person suffers from frequent episodes of corneal abrasion in a year. This clearly indicates that previous abrasions did not heal properly. People with dry eye or other eye problems such as corneal dystrophy also tend to frequently suffer from this corneal injury. In order to prevent recurrent corneal erosion, one can install a humidifier to ensure that the surrounding air remains humid and not dry. Those who have had this corneal injury, should wear protective glasses while roaming in the sun or playing with children. Use of eye ointments such as Lacri-Lube daily before sleeping can also be beneficial to prevent recurrence of this corneal injury.
The doctor uses an ophthalmoscope (an instrument) to closely study the eye. This helps in determining whether the eye has a corneal injury. However, nowadays slit lamp microscopes are used to identify injuries to the cornea, due to their high magnification power.
Most importantly, while undergoing treatment, rubbing the affected eye should be avoided as it will just make matters worse. The eyeball should not be touched with cotton swabs or tweezers as they can cause eye infection. Even if the foreign object is trapped in the eye-ball, avoid touching it as it can simply aggravate this injury.
Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is solely for educating the reader. It is not intended to be a substitute for the advice of a medical expert.