Conjunctivitis refers to inflammation of the thin, translucent tissue (the “conjunctiva”) that lines the white part of the eye.
When the term conjunctivitis is used, it usually refers to “pink eye” or “sore eyes” – an infection of the conjunctiva due to a virus, or less commonly, due to bacteria. This is typically an acute infection associated with flu-like symptoms and is extremely contagious. Fortunately, viral conjunctivitis will commonly recover on its own, although this may take anywhere from one to three weeks.
Other common cause of conjunctivitis may include:
You may experience one or more of the following symptoms :
To prevent the spread of viral conjunctivitis:
Diagnosis of viral conjunctivitis is usually made by a family doctor or eye doctor based on the typical symptoms and an eye examination. If the conjunctivitis does not recover, or recurs often, then an eye examination by an ophthalmologist is required to diagnose other forms of conjunctivitis.
Treatment is usually symptomatic, to reduce the itch and discharge until the eye recovers. Antibiotic eye drops may sometimes be prescribed if bacterial conjunctivitis is suspected.
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