Pink eye or conjunctivitis is a highly contagious bacterial or viral infection of the transparent lining of the eye called the conjunctiva. The infection makes the blood vessels of this part of the eye much more prominent thereby giving it a pink or reddish hue. Hence the name. It rarely causes any changes in vision but it may cause mild sensitivity or discomfort. This condition is so contagious, patients often self-inoculate or contaminate their other eye simply by rubbing one and then the other. It spreads like wild fire in elementary schools and then across families. It is therefore important to identify the symptoms and practice caution and proper hygiene in order to reduce spread.
What are the symptoms?
Patients may complain of mad itching and a gritty or sandy discomfort in the affected eye. In the morning, the eye may stick together and a whitish pus or exudate may be found in the corner of the eye or eyelid.
Can it be treated?
The standard of care for pink eye usually may include a warm compress and possibly an antibiotic eye drop or ointment ribbon if your doctor thinks that it is appropriate. If vision is affected, the doctor may suggest a visit to the emergency room to distinguish between a conjunctivitis and iritis –one is a medical emergency and the other is not.
How can MCare M.D. help?
If you think you have pink eye, don’t be afraid to tell us everything during your meeting with your MCare M.D. doctor. We want to know. Be prepared to tell us when, where, how long…everything. Don’t worry. Everything you tell us is completely confidential. If the doctor thinks that you have an infection that can be treated with prescription medication he or she will send an order to the pharmacy of your choice instantly.