Are you having problems with itchy,
watery, red eyes? Many people automatically assume that they have “pink
eye” but there may be something else going on.
What can cause eye redness?
are many serious conditions that can cause eye redness and these
conditions require immediate treatment. One of the more serious problems
that can cause a red eye is glaucoma. This is a condition in which the
pressure in one of the chambers of the eye is elevated. Glaucoma must be
treated appropriately in order to preserve vision.
are some chronic medical illnesses that cause eye problems. These can
include Collagen Vascular Diseases such as Sjogren’s syndrome and other
autoimmune diseases. Also, eye trauma can cause one’s eye to become
reddened. Other illnesses that cause eye redness include infection and
How can you tell the difference?
taking a careful history and performing a thorough physical exam, your
doctor will be able to determine the likely cause of your eye problems.
You may need to see a specialist for a “slit-lamp” exam.
Why does it matter if it really is “pink eye”?
eye” is the lay term for a viral eye infection. It is extremely
contagious and if you have pink eye, you should limit your contact with
others to prevent transmitting the disease.
Are there other eye infections that I should worry about?
addition to viral infections, bacteria and fungi can also cause eye
infections. It is important to know what is the cause so that the
appropriate medication can be used to cure the infection. Untreated eye
infections can cause complications and vision loss
If I do have allergy eyes, what could be causing it?
time of year, you may have allergy eyes. Vernal is a word that
describes something related to Spring. Many of us are familiar with the
“Vernal” equinox—the day in the spring when the day and night are of
equal length. Some people also have “Vernal conjunctivitis” which is a
medical term for “allergy eyes” that occurs in the spring also.
early spring, it is often tree pollen that is the cause of vernal
conjunctivitis. Later in spring and in early summer, allergy eyes are
often caused by grass pollen. Of course, allergy eyes can occur at any
time of the year. Weed pollen is a problem in the fall and of course,
there are year-round allergens such as dust mites, molds and pet
you have eye redness, you should see your doctor who will often be able
to help you achieve relief. If you need to see a specialist, your
doctor can recommend which specialist would be most appropriate in your