A stye is a localized infection or inflammation of the eyelid margin involving hair follicles of the eyelashes (ie, external hordeolum) or meibomian glands (ie, internal hordeolum). A chalazion is a painless swelling of the meibomian glands. A stye usually is a painful, localized swelling. The entire lid may also be swollen.


Stye Cause

• Blockage and infection of the sebaceous glands or a secondary infection of the meibomian glands of the eyelid.
• Untreated, the disease may spontaneously resolve or it may progress to the formation of a painless mass known as a chalazion. A chalazion can be quite large and can cause visual disturbance. Sometimes a generalized swelling and infection of the eyelid may occur if left untreated.
• The usual complaint is of a localized painful swelling on one eyelid, generally starting as a pricking pain on blinking.
In some cases, the complaint may start as a generalized swelling and redness of the lid that later becomes localized.
Recurrences are common.


Styes are found more frequently in persons who have the following:

• Diabetes
• Chronic blepharitis [lid infection]
• Seborrhea
• High serum lipids (High lipid levels increase the blockage rate of sebaceous glands)
• Small unprescribed refractive error


Stye treatment
• Hot soaks (4 times a day for 15 min) are the mainstay of treatment.
• Antibiotics are indicated only when inflammation has spread beyond the immediate area of the hordeolum.
• Topical antibiotics may be used for recurrent lesions and for those that are actively draining can be prevented with good lid hygiene.