Hordeolum and Stye in Emergency Medicine Follow-up

Updated: Aug 08, 2017
  • Author: Michael J Bessette, MD, FACEP; Chief Editor: Gil Z Shlamovitz, MD, FACEP  more...
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Follow-up

Further Outpatient Care

All patients with hordeolum should seek follow-up care with an ophthalmologist within 1-2 weeks if the condition is not resolved completely with conservative management.

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Inpatient & Outpatient Medications

Patients should use warm compresses 3-4 times per day.

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Deterrence/Prevention

Cleaning of eyelashes or removal of a few affected lashes may improve drainage and reduce recurrence.

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Complications

The most frequent complication of hordeolum is progression to a chalazion that causes cosmetic deformity, corneal irritation, or the need for surgical removal.

Complications of improper drainage are disruption of lash growth, lid deformity, or lid fistula.

Generalized eyelid cellulitis may develop if an internal hordeolum is untreated.

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Prognosis

Spontaneous healing is common.

Frequent recurrences are common.

Progression to systemic infection is rare; only a few case reports appear in the current literature.

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Patient Education

Instruct patients on proper use of warm compresses and antibiotic use as described above.

For prevention, educate patients about lid hygiene.

Instruct patients not to squeeze a stye, because infection may spread to adjacent tissues.

For patient education resources, see the Eye and Vision Center, as well as Chalazion (Lump in Eyelid) and Sty.

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