Russell Levine, MD
Comprehensive Ophthalmologist & Cataract Surgeon located in Hell's Kitchen, New York, NY
Blepharitis can leave your eyelids feeling itchy and inflamed, making it difficult to drive, work at a computer, or complete other routine tasks. At Russell Micah Levine, MD in the Hell's Kitchen neighborhood of Manhattan, ophthalmologist Russell Levine, MD, works with people of all ages to diagnose and treat blepharitis. To schedule your appointment, call the New York City office and speak with a friendly team member or book a consultation online today.
What is blepharitis?
Blepharitis is a common condition that causes your eyelids to become red, swollen, and irritated. Blepharitis also affects the quality of your tears, leading to eye discomfort and dry eye. Most of the time, it occurs due to a blockage of the oil glands at the base of your eyelashes. However, other diseases and eye-related conditions can cause blepharitis as well.
When left untreated, blepharitis can lead to issues that could damage your eyesight, and negatively affect your quality of life. Fortunately, with prompt diagnosis and treatment, it’s possible to manage its uncomfortable effects.
What are the symptoms of blepharitis?
Blepharitis symptoms vary between individuals. Common indications of blepharitis include:
- Watery eyes
- Red eyes
- Itchy eyelids
- Red, swollen eyelids
- Sensitivity to light
- Blurred vision
- Flaking of the skin around the eyes
- Styes / chalazions / hordeolum
As blepharitis gets worse, you might also experience crusted eyelashes or your eyelids sticking together.
What causes blepharitis?
Blepharitis occurs for a variety of reasons. Dr. Levine regularly works with people who have blepharitis due to rosacea, droopy or floppy eyelids, malfunctioning oil glands, and demodex. Demodex are tiny mites that live near the hair follicles in your eyelids.
Other common causes of blepharitis include allergies reactions to eye medications or eye makeup, eczema, and other medical conditions.
How is blepharitis diagnosed?
To diagnose blepharitis, Dr. Levine conducts a comprehensive eye exam. During your appointment, he uses a special magnifying instrument to closely examine your eyelids, eyelashes, and eyes.
Depending on your symptoms, Dr. Levine might also probe your eyelid to examine your oil, or check for evidence of demodex infestation.
How is blepharitis treated?
Treatment for blepharitis usually includes a combination of self-care measures and prescription medications. If you have a mild case of blepharitis, Dr. Levine might recommend that you scrub your eyelids twice a day and use warm compresses to minimize swelling. Dr. Levine will also discuss diet and lifestyle modifications that may improve blepharitis.
If your symptoms persist or get worse, Dr. Levine can prescribe topical and oral medications to fight infection or control inflammation, or even medication to treat an underlying condition. Some of the most common medications used to treat blepharitis include topical steroid and antibiotic ointments and oral antibiotic pills.
To explore your treatment options for blepharitis, schedule an appointment at Russell Micah Levine, MD. Call the office and speak with a team member or book a consultation online today.