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Corneal Abrasion

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Corneal Abrasion

Corneal Abrasion

Corneal abrasion refers to the a problem which results from a scratch to the cornea from poking the eye or by the entering of dirt or foreign particle into the eye, which gets trapped under the eyelid and leads to pain and discomfort in the eye. It is thus, advisable that one should seek help from a general practitioner and not to rub the affected eye in such a situation to prevent further injury and irritation to the eye.


Corneal abrasion may be caused due to aggressive rubbing of the eye, dirty contact lenses, certain forms of eye infections, chemical burns, being poked in the eye by a plant, fingernail etc; dirt, ash, or other foreign objects blown into the eye and caught under the eyelid and failure to protect the eye during surgery especially under a general anesthesia. Besides, the signs and symptoms of this eye condition do not usually take place immediately therefore, it is sometimes difficult to discern its cause.

Symptoms of corneal abrasion

When a person's eye has been poked by an object, he or she may experience blurred vision or even lose memory, sensitivity to light, tearing and redness, pain when opening and closing the eye and a sensation like one has grit in his or her eye. Notably though, when an individual has had a corneal abrasion, he or she is often not likely to forget the severe pain and discomfort that it can cause.


A general practitioner may recommend specific antibiotic eye drops or ointment to prevent any infections when one has had corneal abrasion. The pain and inflammation that comes when the cornea is poked may also be eased by using a medicated eye drop or pain medication; at times, the eye may be temporarily patched during treatment.

However, a slight scratch should heal on its own in less than three days while more severe corneal abrasion may last long to completely heal. Healing of a severe abrasion may be hastened by not rubbing the eye, wearing of sunglasses to help reduce pain that is felt when the victim glares at the sun and avoiding wearing contacts until the eye has completely healed and the general practitioner says it is safe to do so.

Many people who suffer from minor corneal abrasions recover fully from the condition without any permanent damage to the eye. Nonetheless, deeper scratches may lead to cornea erosion, scarring of the cornea and even corneal infections. Lack of proper treatment may worsen such complications resulting into long-term problems. An optician should be sought for advice and treatment in case an unusual symptom including the recurrence of pain following healing.

The first reaction when a foreign particle enters the eye is to urge to scratch or rub the eyes with your hands. However, do not rub it as doing so can cause an abrasion. Instead, blink your eye severally, pulling the upper eyelid over the lower one; or  gently rinsing the eye using a sterile saline solution of clean water while avoiding rubbing the eye in the process.

In case there is something in the cornea, do not attempt to remove it, only a general practitioner should do so as one may end up doing permanent eye damage. One should therefore visit an optician as soon as possible when he or she still feels like there is something still caught in his or her eyes. Doctors shall examine the patient's eye using special eye stain that sees the surface of the cornea better and that provides a clear way of removing such objects in the eye.