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Lacrimal Gland Abnormalities

Chalazion

This is a common condition and is caused by a blockage in one of the small glands in the eyelid.  A small lump develops as the normal contents cannot escape.  Although it is unsightly, it is easy to treat and should not cause you any major problems with your vision.

As a first step in treatment, you will be prescribed antibiotics to reduce the inflammation in the eyelid. Heat treatment with hot compresses can also help and may actually release the contents of the cyst which means that further intervention is not needed.

If it has not resolved on this treatment, it can be removed surgically.  Your name will be put on the minor operations waiting list and you will be given a date to come in for the procedure.

Treatment

You will be asked to report to the Out-Patients Department, at Oxford Eye Hospital from where you will be escorted to the Eye Theatre Suite.  Your eyelid will need to be numbed by an anaesthetic injection to the area.  This will sting initially, but the lid will soon become frozen.

The cyst is removed from the inside of the eyelid – no stitches are necessary, and no scar will be visible. Antibiotic ointment will then be applied, followed by an eye pad.

The pad may be removed after 2 hours, or left overnight for comfort, if felt necessary.  You may be given ointment to use in the eye for 3-4 subsequent days.

Often the lid is bruised following the procedure – do not worry, this is normal and will resolve within 2 weeks.

Some people are prone to getting these lumps again.  You can help prevent them from re-occurring by using hot compresses on the lids and massaging them in the morning.