Corneal Abrasion

Corneal Abrasion occurs when the cornea is scratched. This can be extremely painful because there are many nerves attached to the cornea. However, these nerves can be essential to an early diagnosis, since they alert us to the presence of foreign particles in our eyes.

Often corneal abrasions occur when a foreign body such as dust, wood shavings, sand, or other particles enter the eye and scratches the epithelial layer of the cornea. Other causes include fingernail or pet nail scratches, scratches from branches or leaves, or accidentally being poked in the eye by a makeup applicator. If you know that a foreign body has entered your eye, you can try flushing it out of your eye, blinking, or pulling your upper eye over the lower eye. However, you do not want to try to remove the object, rub your eye, or touch the eye.

People who are most at risk for corneal abrasions include those who work in dusty environments, use contact lenses for longer than the prescribed time, have a problem with dry eyes, or are exposed to sunlight or artificial ultraviolet light for extended periods of time.

For many corneal abrasions, the recovery is swift and complete. However, with a deeper abrasion longer-lasting problems may occur. For diagnosis of corneal abrasions, the doctor can use a slit lamp and fluorescent lighting to examine the eye.

Because contact lens wearers are more at risk for infections, prophylactic topical antibiotics may be prescribed. Traditionally, eye patches have been used as a treatment. However, some physicians have only treated the pain of the corneal abrasion.

For more information on this condition or to have your eye examined, please contact Palm Beach Eye Center today.

**This article is not intended to serve as medical advice. Please contact an eye doctor before attempting to treat a foreign particle in the eye.