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Home » Eye Disorders » Corneal Ulcer

Corneal Ulcer in Philadelphia, PA

Corneal ulcer treatment is offered by Ophthalmic Partners of Pennsylvania and New Jersey for patients in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Cherry Hill, New Jersey; and the surrounding communities.

What is a corneal ulcer?

The cornea is a thin membrane that lies over your iris, the colored part of your eye. When an open sore develops on your cornea, the condition is known as a “corneal ulcer.”

What causes a corneal ulcer?

The most common cause of a corneal ulcer is an infection. This includes bacterial, viral and fungal infections. Bacterial infections are most common in people who wear contact lenses. Viral infections of the eye include herpes simplex and varicella. Fungal infections typically occur in people who use eye drops that contain steroids. Corneal ulcers may also be caused by small tears in the cornea, certain eye conditions and chemical burns.

What are the risk factors for a corneal ulcer?

People who wear contact lenses are at risk for developing a corneal ulcer. Other risk factors include participation in activities that may result in damage to your eye, such as contact sports; exposure to chemicals and eye conditions, such as dry eye or Bell’s palsy, a condition that keeps the eye from closing properly.

How can a corneal ulcer be prevented?

The best way to prevent a corneal ulcer is to protect your eyes, especially when you are participating in activities that may result in trauma to your eyes. If you wear contacts, you should follow the recommendations of your eye doctor with regards to the length of time you are able to wear your contacts. Contact lens wearers should also clean their contact lenses regularly.

How is a corneal ulcer diagnosed?

Corneal ulcers should be diagnosed and treated quickly. Understanding the symptoms of a corneal ulcer can help you know when to see your eye doctor. Symptoms include changes in your vision, pain, discharge from your eyes and a sensation that you have something in your eye.

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, call our office to schedule an appointment. Your eye doctor uses a special instrument to exam your eyes. A special dye may be used in your eye to help your eye doctor detect the corneal ulcer.

How is a corneal ulcer treated?

Treatment for a corneal ulcer depends on the severity of the condition. For mild cases, home treatment typically resolves the corneal ulcer. Your eye doctor may recommend that you stop wearing your contact lenses. Additional recommendations may include cold compresses to be applied to the affected eye and non-prescription pain medications to help with any discomfort. You should avoid rubbing and touching your eyes.

For more severe cases, your eye doctor may recommend medications to address the infection. When medications fail to heal the corneal ulcer, emergency eye surgery may be required. In these cases, a corneal transplant is typically recommended.

Additional Eye Disorders

Early detection of eye disease is the best defense against vision loss, particularly for individuals over the age of 40. Should you experience any vision problems that could be an indicator of an eye disorder, contact one of our offices in Philadelphia, PA, Bala Cynwyd, PA, or Marlton, NJ, as soon as possible to book an assessment.

The eye doctors and surgeons at Ophthalmic Partners of Pennsylvania and New Jersey have the necessary expertise and experience to diagnose, manage, and treat complex eye disorders and disease. Visit us today to keep your eyes healthy and your vision clear.