Blepharitis treatment in Ealing. If you are a resident of Ealing borough you are fortunate enough to have a branch of Moorfields Eye Hospital located at Ealing Hospital on Uxbridge road. Unless we have a serious eye condition there is no need to be seen by a specialist Ophthalmologist. Fortunately, conditions like blepharitis are not sight threatening. You may been diagnosed with this condition by your GP or Optician. Blepharitis is an inflammation of the eye lids that can be acute or chronic, anterior or posterior.
1 in 20 eye problems reported to GPs (NHS website) and is more common in those over 40 years
What causes blepharitis?
The causes of blepharitis can be linked to
- Infection of the eyelash follicle
- Skin conditions like rocasea, dermatitis
- Demodex (skin mite) proliferation- demodicosis
- Seborrhoeic dermatitis
- Staphylococcus bacteria
How do my eyes feel if I have blepharitis?
- Watery eyes
- Sensitivity to light
- Dry eyes
- Feels like an eyelash in the eye.
How do my eyes look if I have blepharitis?
You may actually not notice you have blepharitis as things may appear normal in the beginning. However, in the latter stages, as the blepharitis becomes more established a number of effects are possible which vary between individuals so the following signs may become apparent:
- Crusty eye lids
- Red eye lids
- Sticky eye lids
- Scaly eye lids
- Red eyes
- Loss of eyelashes (madorosis)
- Eyelashes changing colour (poliosis)
- Intolerance/sensitivity to contact lens wear
- Prone to styes/ chalazion
What can I do to treat blepharitis?
Although blepharitis is not a sight threatening condition, it can lead to other complications, which on rare occasions could be sight threatening. In most cases it is a chronic condition that causes visual discomfort and fatigue.
The traditional mode of treating blepharitis has been with the use of lid scrubs to clear away the debris, dry skin, mucous from the base of the lashes and in doing so to reduce inflammation and relieve the symptoms.
The problem with this treatment is that a person would need to be strict with their regime over the long term due to the chronic nature of the condition. Not only this the process of cleaning is not always good enough to remove all the scurf, debris and exotoxin-laden biofilm.
If you are looking for effective blepharitis treatment in Ealing. Our optometrist can perform a simple painless procedure to micro-exfoliate your eyelids & lashes. The BlephEx™ procedure is used to very precisely and carefully, spin a medical grade micro-sponge along the edge of your eyelids and lashes, removing scurf and debris and exfoliating your eyelids.
BlephEx® is a painless procedure performed by our Optometrist. A revolutionary new patented BlephEx® hand piece is used to very precisely and carefully, spin a medical grade micro-sponge along the edge of your eyelids and lashes, removing scurf and debris and exfoliating your eyelids.
Scurf and bacterial debris are the main causes of inflammatory lid disease, and removing them improves the overall health of the eyelid. It is also effective at treating Demodex mites too.
The procedure lasts about 6 -8 minutes and is well tolerated. Most patients simply report a tickling sensation. A numbing drop is usually placed in each eye prior to treatment for increased comfort. The eyes are rinsed well afterwards.
After the procedure, the patient is instructed on how to maintain their clean eyelids with regular nightly lid hygiene. Since home treatments are only semi-effective, the procedure is typically repeated at 4-6 month intervals.
Is BlephEx® for me?
If you suffer from one or more of the following symptoms, you may be suffering from blepharitis:
- Itching or scratchy eyes
- Foreign body sensation
- Dry eyes
- Eye rubbing
Blepharitis can only be diagnosed by an eye care/medical professional. Make sure to let your doctor know of your eye symptoms and inquire about BlephEx®.
There are several conditions which may affect the severity of blepharitis such as dry eye disease, allergies, seborrheic dermatitis, rosacea, age, contact lens wear, poor immune status, rheumatoid arthritis, Sjogrens disease, and androgen deficiency.
The effects of untreated blepharitis
If left untreated, blepharitis can become chronic and go on to cause the following:
- Contact Lens Intolerance – Contact lens wearers are more prone to developing bio-films and subsequent blepharitis/dry eye. Bacteria can adhere more easily to a contact lens than to human tissue, allowing them to increase their numbers earlier in life. This increase in bacteria lead to early formation of bio-films, exo-toxins and inflammation which sensitises these eyes to reject the contact lens. Treatment every 6 months can help prevent this from occurring.
- Dry Eye Syndrome – Due to inflammatory down regulation of tears glands in the eyelids, and swelling with subsequent occlusion of tear excretory ducts. Treated with numerous artificial tears, punctal plugs, night-time moisture chamber googles, bedtime lubricating ointments and hospital prescribed drugs.
- Chalazions (styes) – Occlusion of Meibomian excretory ducts causing painful swelling of Meibomian gland with leakage of highly inflammatory oil components into surrounding tissue. Treated with hot compresses, lid scrubs, surgery
- Cicatricial Ectropion – outward turning of the lower eyelid due to chronic lid inflammation and scarring down of the structural support tissue of the eyelid. Results in severe dry eye syndrome, corneal scarring and vision loss. Treated by artificial tears, ointments, hyaluronic acid injection and surgery. May necessitate a corneal transplant if scarring of the cornea becomes severe.
- Involutional Ectropian – outward turning of the lower eyelid due to laxity and sagging of the lower lid caused by chronic inflammation and weakening of the eyelid support tissue. Treated by artificial tears, ointments and surgery.
- Cicatricial Entropion – inward turning of the lower eyelid due to chronic lid inflammation and scarring down of the structural support tissue of the eyelid. Results in chronic irritation of the eye, corneal ulceration and scarring, and vision loss. Treated by surgery. May necessitate a corneal transplant if scarring of the cornea becomes severe.
- Involutional Entropian – inward eversion of the lower eyelid due to laxity and sagging of the lower lid caused by chronic inflammation and weakening of the eyelid support tissue. Treated surgery. May necessitate a corneal transplant if scarring of the cornea becomes severe.
- Acquired Distichiasis – an extra row of lashes that grow from Meibomian glands due to chronic inflammation. Treatment is epilation of the lashes, either mechanical or using electrolysis.
- Trichiasis – an inward turning of the lashes so that they abrade the corneal surface causing irritation, tearing, poor vision and occasionally corneal scarring. Caused by acute and chronic inflammation of the lid margin, which disrupts the normal intra-lid anatomy surrounding the lash follicles. Treatment is epilation of the lashes, either mechanical or using electrolysis.
If you have any of the above, blepharitis maybe the underlying cause.