What Causes a Bright Red Eye?

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

What Causes a Bright Red Eye?

Patients sometimes call our practice complaining of a “bright red eye” or “bleeding eye”. It seems to come on with a cough or a sneeze-or sometimes with some heavy lifting-or for no reason at all-and causes no pain, blurry vision or discharge. What could it be? We will of course ask you to come in so we can evaluate the problem, but it is possible that it is a subconjunctival hemorrhage. Subconjunctival hemorrhage is a benign disorder that is a common cause of acute ocular redness or “bright red eye”. The major risk factors include trauma and contact lens usage in younger patients, whereas among the elderly, systemic vascular diseases such as hypertension, diabetes, and arteriosclerosis are more common. In patients in whom subconjunctival hemorrhage is recurrent or persistent, further evaluation, including a workup for systemic hypertension, bleeding disorders, systemic and ocular malignancies and drug side effects, is warranted.

If you or someone you know experiences a “bright red eye” please feel free to call Eyecare Medical Group, 53 Sewall Street, Portland, Maine 04102 at 888-374-2020, visit Eyecare Medical Group or facebook.com/eyecaremedicalgroup to schedule an appointment.