Chalazion

Definition

A chalazion is a non-infectious, hard lump that forms on the eyelid.

Chalazion
Nucleus factsheet image
Copyright © Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.

Causes

A chalazion can form when the oil produced from a gland of the eyelid thickens and can no longer flow. When the oil hardens, it blocks the gland and causes a lump to form in the eyelid. This condition can recur.

Risk Factors

Factors that may increase your chance of a chalazion:

Symptoms

The initial symptom is a small swelling on the eyelid. It may look like a stye. It may or may not be painful. After a few days, the lump on the eyelid often begins to harden.

A chalazion can rarely cause complications, which may include:

  • Localized infection at the site of the chalazion (stye)
  • Visual problems due to the chalazion pushing against and distorting the shape of the eye

Diagnosis

You will be asked about your symptoms and medical history. An eye exam will be done. Rarely, a sample of fluid from the chalazion is taken and tested in a lab.

Treatment

A chalazion will often disappear on its own. Treatment may include:

Self Care

A warm compress is applied to the affected eyelid several times a day. Follow with gentle massage.

Medication

Corticosteroid is injected into the chalazion. This is done by an ophthalmologist, but is rarely required. Antibiotics may also be used if an infection (stye) develops.

Surgery

An incision may be made near the chalazion to allow it to drain. The procedure is usually performed in the office with a local anesthetic. Surgery may be done if the chalazion does not respond to other treatments. It may also be considered if the chalazion is large, grows rapidly, or causes vision problems.

Prevention

Eyelid hygeiene can prevent the development of a chalazion. This includes the following:

  • Always wash your hands before touching your eyes.
  • Always use a clean facecloth when washing your face.
  • Wash your eyelids with warm water and mild soap.
  • Never squeeze or poke your eye.
  • Do not rub your eye.
  • Make sure your contacts are clean before putting them in.
  • Do not use old makeup.

Revisions

Please note, not all procedures included in this resource library are available at Allegiance Health or performed by Allegiance Health physicians.

All EBSCO Publishing proprietary, consumer health and medical information found on this site is accredited by URAC. URAC's Health Web Site Accreditation Program requires compliance with 53 rigorous standards of quality and accountability, verified by independent audits. To send comments or feedback to our Editorial Team regarding the content please email us at HLEditorialTeam@ebscohost.com.

This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.

Editorial Policy | Privacy Policy | Terms and Conditions | Support
Copyright © 2008 EBSCO Publishing. All rights reserved.

If you are a smoker, it’s important for you to understand that smoking slows recovery and increases the risk of problems. Several weeks prior to surgery, talk with your health care provider if you need help quitting.