Cellulitis of the eyelid, also called periorbital cellulitis, is an infection of the eyelid and surrounding soft tissue. Although anyone can contract eyelid cellulitis, it is most often found in children under the age of 5.
Knowing what signs may indicate eyelid cellulitis can help you seek prompt treatment for the fastest recovery and best outcome. Here’s what you need to know if you suspect that you or your child has eyelid cellulitis.
What Are Causes and Symptoms of Eyelid Cellulitis?
Eyelid cellulitis is often contracted through a cut or insect bite near the eye where bacteria can enter, so you may notice a scratch near the eye along with other symptoms.
The main symptoms of eyelid cellulitis include:
- Swelling and redness of one or both eyelids
- Swelling of the tissues around the eye
- Tenderness of the swollen tissues
- Difficulty opening the affected eye
If any of the above symptoms are accompanied by eye pain, especially with eye movements or changes in vision, seek emergency eye care. This may indicate orbital cellulitis — a more serious infection that requires prompt treatment.
How is Eyelid Cellulitis Treated?
The type of treatment for eyelid cellulitis will depend on the patient’s age and degree of infection, but will include either oral, injected or intravenous antibiotics.
Infants less than a year old, and children and adults with a severe infection, will need to be admitted to the hospital for intravenous antibiotics.
Oral antibiotics are used to treat periorbital cellulitis in older children and adults.
We Treat Eyelid Cellulitis and Other Eye Emergencies
If you suspect you or your child has eyelid cellulitis, contact Pierce Family Vision in Waterloo for a prompt appointment.
Our optometric team offers emergency eye care and treats a wide range of ocular conditions and emergencies.
Whether you have eyelid cellulitis or another condition, we can help. To schedule your eye exam or learn more about our services, call Pierce Family Vision in Waterloo today!
- A: No, because the eye has an effective barrier that prevents the infection from spreading to the tissues within and behind the eye. However, if eyelid cellulitis isn’t treated in time, it can spread to other parts of the eye, leading to a serious sight-threatening infection inside the eye, known as orbital cellulitis and long-term problems with vision.
- A: Eye emergencies consist of eye infections, inflammations, severe allergies, pain, trauma, burns and foreign bodies in the eye. You should also contact your optometrist without delay if you experience a sudden increase in floaters or flashers, or any other changes in your vision.
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