Red Eye

Eye Deceases

(H57.9) Red Eye

Information About Red Eye

Red eye is the term which is a non-specific description of the appearance of the eye. Red eye can be seen in a disease, injury, eye infections, or in any other condition like allergies.

If you observed red eye and visit a doctor. A doctor will not take immediate measures since it is a common state which can be caused due to tiredness or allergy or cold and flu. Sometimes red eye is caused due to traumatic incidents.

ICD-10 H57.9
ICD-9 379.93
DiseasesDB 18665

Red eyes are also sometimes called as "bloodshot eyes", "pink eye" and "allergy eyes".

The main step in evaluating red eye is to differentiate which conditions can be treated by a primary care or to be consulted to an ophthalmologist.

Symptoms of Red Eye

Symptoms that require immediate consultation of an ophthalmologist are

  1. Pain
  2. Proptosis
  3. Perilimbal injection
  4. Tenderness
  5. Photophobia
  6. Decreased or blurred vision
  7. Burning of eyes
  8. Itching of eyes
  9. Watery discharge

Diagnostic eye instruments required for the diagnosis and basic analysis include topical anesthetic drops, Snellen’s chart which is used as standard for distant visual acuity, pinhole card for affirming decreased visual acuity, fluorescein paper strips to stain the cornea, a cobalt-blue penlight, an ophthalmoscope, a Schiotz tonometer, 0.9% saline water for irrigating eye or to moisten the fluorescein, and a magnifying glass instrument. A slit lamp can also be very helpful to observe the eye.

Treatment of Red Eye

Red eye can be treated if the cause is known. Red eye caused due to allergens can be treated with the help of oral antihistamines. Eye drops like Visine can also be used to treat red eyes.

If the cause of the red eye is dry eyes, artificial tears available in the market can be used to overcome this problem.

Some measures to avoid discomfort to the eyes can be useful as

  1. Avoid touching the eyes frequently.
  2. Avoid rubbing the eyes.
  3. Changing the location if environmental factors aggravate the symptoms
  4. Rinse the eyes with cool water.
  5. Use ice pack over the eyes, the cooling effect of eyes can prevent burning sensation or irritation in eyes.
  6. Sleeping for almost seven to eight hours.
  7. Healthy diet to increase the resistant power of the body.
  8. Avoid smoking; it can increase irritation in eyes.

Causes of Red Eye

Red eyes can be cause enlargement and dilation of the blood vessels present on the surface of the eye. Major causes of red eye are allergens and particles that irritate the eye like pollen grains, dust, air particles, wind and exposure to sunlight.

Red eyes are also observed in people who take insufficient sleep or are deprived of sleep.

Itching, watery discharge, painful eyes and decreased acuity along with blurred vision are some of the symptoms experienced when eyes are infected or there is inflammation of eyes.

Red eyes are also experienced by people wearing contact lenses who do not maintain hygiene or use the contact lens improperly.

Sometimes dry eyes also proceed further towards red eyes.

Red eyes need attention in some disorders of eye such as

  1. Blepharitis
  2. Conjunctivitis
  3. Corneal ulcers
  4. Glaucoma
  5. Sub-conjunctival hemorrhage
  6. Injury
  7. Corneal ulcer
  8. Uveitis

Types of Red Eye

Red eyes are also sometimes called as "bloodshot eyes", "pink eye" and "allergy eyes".