Wednesday, February 29, 2012


Conjunctivitis is swelling (inflammation) or infection of the membrane lining the eyelids (conjunctiva).

There are many causes of conjunctivitis. Viruses are the most common cause. Other causes include:
·               Allergies (allergic conjunctivitis)
·               Bacteria
·               Certain diseases
·               Chemical exposure
·               Chlamydia
·               Fungi
·               Parasites (rarely)
·               Use of contact lenses (especially extended-wear lenses)

"Pink eye" refers to a viral infection of the conjunctiva. These infections are especially contagious among children.


Treatment of conjunctivitis depends on the cause.
Allergic conjunctivitis may respond to allergy treatment. It may disappear on its own when the allergen that caused it is removed. Cool compresses may help soothe allergic conjunctivitis.
Antibiotic medication, usually eye drops, is effective for bacterial conjunctivitis. Viral conjunctivitis will disappear on its own. Many doctors give a mild antibiotic eyedrop for pink eye to prevent bacterial conjunctivitis.
You can soothe the discomfort of viral or bacterial conjunctivitis by applying warm compresses (clean cloths soaked in warm water) to your closed eyes.