Definition: is an inflammation of the eyelids that involves the edges of the eyelids and eyelash hair follicles.
Classification / type of disease:It may be classified as seborrhoeic, staphylocccal, mixed, posterior or meiobomitis, or parasitic
Staphylococcal blepharitis: caused by infection of the anterior portion of the eyelid by Staphylococcal bacteria. As the infection progresses, the sufferer may begin to notice a foreign body sensation, matting of the lashes, and burning.
- Staphylococcal blepharitis is a more severe condition which may start in childhood and continue through adulthood. It is commonly recurrent and it requires special medical care.
- In cases of blepharitis caused by Staphylococcus aureus, the presence of a collarette (a ring-like formation around the lash shaft) can be observed. This is the main sign of this particular condition. Other specific symptoms include loss of eyelashes or broken eyelashes.
- Tx= Chloramphenicol ointment. Fusidic acid is usually the choice of antibiotics in cases when Chloramphenicol is contraindicated.
Posterior blepharitis or rosacea-associated blepharitis
- The most common type of blepharitis is often found in people with a Rosacea skin type. The oil glands in the lid of rosacea sufferers secrete a modified oil which leads to inflammation at the meibomian gland openings which are found at the edge of the lid.
Presenting symptoms / signs:
- Flaking of skin
- Crusting at the lid margins
- Cysts at the lid margin
- Debris in the tear film
- Gritty sensation of the eye
- Reduced vision
- Irritation and burning
- Foreign body sensation
- Eye dryness
- Pain wearing contacts
- Ulcerative areas and bleeding
- Clumping of eye lashes
Aetiology: rosacea, seborrhoea, oily skin, dandruff or dry eyes.
Treatment / management:
- Daily routine of lid margin hygiene.
- An alternative after washing is to coat the eyelids with a good quality hair condition – Leave in place for several minutes then rinse.
- If conventional treatments for blepharitis do not bring relief, patients may consider allergy testing and ocular antihistamines