Jacqueline D. Griffiths, M.D., P.C.
12110 Sunset Hills Road Suite 50 LL
Reston, Virginia 20190
703-834-9777 Fax 703-834-8187 Toll Free 800-294-1001


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The eye is surrounded by small oil-producing glands that help lubricate the eye. Occasionally, a gland becomes plugged and hard, forming a chalazion (ch lae zee on) and, at other times the gland becomes infected, in which case the resulting abscess is called a stye (sti).


A stye can cause one or more of the following symptoms:

• pain

• redness

• excess tearing

• blurred vision

• granular sensation in the eye

• oozing pus, which can spread to other areas around the eyes


Luckily, most styes stay small and are just a minor annoyance. They can be treated at home with warm compresses applied directly to the eye several times a day. They often resolve on their own within a few days. Styes that become more infected can be treated with antibiotics.

In the worst cases, styes can be surgically drained and/or removed in the doctor's office.