Blepharitis is the inflammation of the edge of the eyelid.
Seborrheic blepharitis can appear alone or combined with staphylococcal blepharitis or a meibomian gland dysfunction. The inflammation principally appears on the inner rim of the eyelid although a variable number of scabs can be found, typically oily or greasy, on the eyelids, eyelashes, eyebrows or scalp.
Patients with seborrheic blepharitis often also experience increased secretion from the meibomian glands, which appear opaque when squeezed.
The symptoms are chronic reddening of the eyelids, a burning sensation and occasionally the sensation of a foreign body in the eye. A small percentage of patients develop keratitis or conjunctivitis. Keratitis is characterised by punctate epithelial erosions spread over the lower third of the cornea. Approximately one third of the cases of seborrheic blepharitis include insufficient tear production.
Cleaning the eyelid is the main treatment for patients with blepharitis. If inflammation forms a prominent component of the blepharitis, it may be useful to apply a short treatment of topical steroids on the rim of the eyelids. If the blepharitis mainly affects the posterior rim of the eyelid, systemic antibiotics are the principal treatment used. Bacteria-induced blepharitis responds to topical antibiotics.
Dr. Paula Verdaguer, M.D. PhD
COMB license number: 40.737
Specialising in cornea, refractive surgery and cataracts