The Meibomian glands are branched sebaceous glands in the thickness of the cartilage of the upper and lower eyelids, the excretory ducts of which open at the lash line. Normally, the Meibomian glands produce a fat secret, which is part of the tear film that moisturizes the eyes and serves to lubricate the cornea and the edges of the eyelids. Thanks to this oily secret, the friction between the edge of the eyelids and the front surface of the eye when blinking is reduced.
When the excretory duct of the gland is blocked, the fat secret accumulates inside it, the gland increases in size and gradually turns into a dense rounded formation surrounded by a capsule – chalazion.
Chalazion is often confused with barley — since the initial symptoms of these diseases are similar, moreover, internal barley can cause chalazion. However, unlike barley, chalazion does not pass on its own and is a chronic pathology.
The reasons for the development of chalazion can be very diverse.
Chalazion can occur spontaneously due to blockage of the Meibomian gland.
Chalazion often occurs in chronic blepharitis and rosacea.
Chalazion can also occur in violation of personal hygiene rules and under stress, with a decrease in the protective functions of the body, or frequent colds, gastrointestinal pathology (chronic gastritis, colitis, gastroenterocolitis, biliary dyskinesia, dysbacteriosis, etc.). Also, risk factors may be hypothermia, the use of contact lenses. Often chalazion develops from internal barley — with its periodic relapses or lack of proper treatment.
There are also a number of factors that lead to chalazion that you can’t directly influence. Any condition of the body that provokes increased sebum production is a potential cause of chalazion. Seborrhea, hormonal changes — for example, in diabetes – are just some of them.
This disease is not inherited – it is acquired. At a young age, it occurs much more often than in older people, because the glands in older age work less intensively.
With the development of chalazion, patients complain of a bump on the lower or upper eyelid, which slowly increases in size. Vision does not change, except when the chalazion is so large that it puts pressure on the cornea, provoking astigmatism. Mostly, patients are concerned about a cosmetic defect.
Usually, the disease does not develop immediately, but over several weeks.
When examined in the thickness of the eyelid, a dense rounded formation is found in the size of a millet grain to a small pea (2-8 mm), painless on palpation, covered with unchanged, mobile skin.
When examining the inner surface of the eyelid, local redness is observed.
The addition of a secondary infection can cause purulent inflammation of the chalazion-abscessing. At the same time, there is pain, the skin over the chalazion turns red, around the chalazion capsule there is swelling of the eyelid tissues, a temperature reaction, according to eyexan.com. These symptoms are an indication for immediate contact with an ophthalmologist.
Chalazion can spontaneously open from the conjunctiva or skin, while a white paste-like mass is released. Sometimes a fistula is formed – a channel between the cavity of the chalazion and the surface of the skin. Around the fistula opening, granulations are found – tissue overgrowth. The skin is dry, red, covered with crusts of dried discharge.
What to do?
Today, there are several treatment regimens for chalazion – their choice depends on the stage and features of the course of the disease. Common in all cases, as well as any other problems with such a sensitive organ as the eyes, one thing-the diagnosis and treatment of the problem should be carried out by a qualified ophthalmologist.
Attention! If you suspect chalazion, you can not conduct independent treatment with “folk remedies”. Most of these recommendations are either ineffective and provoke a relapse of the disease, or, which is dangerous for your health, aggravate its development. Do not risk getting an infection or increasing irritation — and be treated only under the supervision of a doctor.
It is strictly forbidden:
- warm up chalazion with signs of inflammation – this can cause the spread of the purulent process to the surrounding tissues with the development of an abscess and phlegmon of the eyelid.
- squeeze out the contents of the chalazion.