Chalazion

chalazion
A chalazion is a small, non-infectious lump that develops in the upper or lower eyelid due to the blockage of the meibomian gland, an oil gland in the eyelid. The meibomian gland produces fluid that lubricates the eye. While children do develop chalazions, they more commonly affect adults between the ages of 30 to 50.

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Causes of Chalazion

There are almost 100 meibomian glands in the eyelid, located near the eyelashes. When the duct that drains the gland is blocked, the fluid becomes backed up inside the gland and forms a chalazion. A chalazion may also form as a result of an eyelid infection.

Symptoms of Chalazion

  • A bump or lump in the upper or lower eyelid
  • Tenderness of the eyelid
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Excessive tearing
  • Blurry vision
  • Blepharitis
  • Astigmatism

Treatment of Chalazion

Chalazion usually resolve on their own, over the course of time. It can take a few months before they disappear. To treat a chalazion, the following options are available:

  • Warm compresses applied four times a day for 10 to 15 minutes each time
  • Antibiotic ointment
  • Steroid injection
  • Surgical drainage (chalaziectomy)

While older children and adults may undergo the surgical drainage procedure in a doctor’s office under local anesthesia, general anesthesia is usually recommended for a chalazion removal in young children. If a chalazion recurs in the same place, a tissue biopsy may be conducted in order to rule out a more serious issue.

Chalaziectomy

A chalazion is a small, non-infectious lump that develops in the upper or lower eyelid due to the blockage of the meibomian gland, an oil gland in the eyelid. If the chalazion does not resolve on its own, or after treatment such as the application of warm compresses or a steroid injection, a surgical drainage procedure known as chalaziectomy may be necessary.

A chalaziectomy is performed as an outpatient procedure using local anesthesia. The chalazion is generally removed from underneath the eyelid to ensure that no visible scar will remain. Once the incision is made on the inner eyelid, the contents of the chalazion are removed. No sutures are required as the tiny incision typically heals quickly and thoroughly on its own.

Following the procedure, an antibiotic ointment will be applied and the eye is bandaged. Patients can return home soon afterward and are instructed on how long to leave the eye covering in place. Antibiotic eye drops or ointment should be used for several days after a chalaziectomy to prevent infection.

While a chalaziectomy is considered safe for most patients, there are certain risks associated with any surgical procedure.