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Stye Specialist

Troy L. Carter, MD -  - Ophthalmologist

Texas Midwest Eye Center, LLP

Troy L. Carter, MD

Ophthalmologist & Cataract Specialist located in Abilene, TX

A stye may begin as a small lump, but it's an incredibly painful lump, and it can cause swelling in the entire eyelid. Many patients seek the help of ophthalmologist Troy L. Carter, M.D. in Abilene, Texas, when they have a stye that doesn't quickly improve. Prompt medical care eases your pain and puts an end to the infection. To schedule an appointment, call Texas Midwest Eye Center, LLP or use the online booking feature today.

Stye Q&A

What causes a stye?

A stye is a small, red bump that often resembles a pimple and appears at the base of an eyelash or under your eyelid. 

When the stye, called a hordeolum, is at the base of an eyelash, it develops due to a bacterial infection in the hair follicle. 

Styes that appear on the inside of your eyelid occur when one of the oil-producing glands in your eyelid is infected.

Another eye condition, blepharitis, can also cause a stye. Blepharitis arises from several possible problems but most often occurs when the oil-producing glands become clogged, causing redness and inflammation.

You can also develop blepharitis from skin conditions such as rosacea, seborrheic dermatitis, and an allergic reaction involving your eyelids.

What symptoms occur due to a stye?

You can immediately see the red lump when a stye develops. The lump is very painful and tender to the touch. Additionally, your eye may feel scratchy and sore or get teary. The stye often becomes swollen, and in some cases, the swelling may affect your entire eyelid.

Blepharitis also causes pain or discomfort and swollen eyelids. This condition may also cause itching, dry eyes, excessive tearing, blurry vision, and inflammation in the surrounding tissues.

How are styes treated?

Many styes improve on their own. You may accelerate healing by applying a warm washcloth to your closed eye for 5-10 minutes several times daily.

While you wait for the stye to heal, don't try to squeeze the pus out because that spreads the infection. It's also important to keep your eye clean. Don't wear makeup, and don't wear contacts until the stye heals.

Even when styes heal, they commonly recur. It's time to schedule an eye exam when:

  • The stye keeps returning
  • The stye doesn't improve within 48 hours
  • Redness and swelling involve your entire eyelid
  • Redness and swelling extend into your cheeks and face

If you have a stye that persists, Dr. Carter prescribes antibiotic eyedrops or a topical antibiotic cream. Should your infection spread, he prescribes oral antibiotics.

Sometimes, a stye won't heal and go away, even after taking antibiotics. When that happens, Dr. Carter makes a small cut in the stye and drains the pus.

If your stye doesn't improve or the infection spreads, call the office of Troy L. Carter, M.D., or request an appointment online today.