Common Eye Infections in Cape Coral, FL

What are Eye Infections?

The majority of eye infections are passed on from friends or family who have the infection. Most often, they are carried from one individual to the next when someone touches his or her eyes after not cleaning their hands. They can be brought on by viruses, fungi, or bacteria and are generally very contagious. Individuals with eye infections tend to suffer from soreness, inflammation, scratchiness, and itchiness in one or both eyes. If neglected, eye infections can also lead to short-term partial blindness. Eye infections can present symptoms that range from mild to severe. Most of these ailments can be resolved with at-home care while others will go away on their own. Patients should understand that certain eye infections can be very serious and must be treated by an experienced ophthalmologist right away. Reach out to us for an eye evaluation at Cataract & Refractive Institute of Florida if you suspect an eye infection. Board-certified ophthalmologist Dr. James Croley has extensive experience in diagnosing and alleviating both standard and rare classes of eye infections. Contact any of our clinic locations in Cape Coral, Lehigh Acres, or Bonita Springs.

What Are Some Common Eye Infections?

These are several of the typical kinds of eye infections. It is really helpful for adults and teens to learn about them. In cases where you think that you or a family member are potentially experiencing one, you should schedule a visit at Cataract & Refractive Institute of Florida right away. The most important aspect of relieving an eye infection is catching it early.


While typically occurring in adults, this infection can develop in patients who are much younger. It is often caused by bacteria and symptoms generally include oozing discharge that produces a crust along the eyelids, itchiness, watery eyes, and redness. Patients who have ocular rosacea, seborrheic dermatitis, or psoriasis have a heightened risk for developing this infection.

Pink Eye

Commonly called conjunctivitis, pink eye is possibly the most familiar eye infection. Pink eye is virtually always caused by bacteria or a virus and is incredibly infectious. The main symptoms of pink eye are red, gritty eyes with abnormal discharge. In cases where pink eye is the result of a bacterial infection, an antibiotic is usually prescribed.

Corneal Ulcers

Corneal ulcers are essentially eye abscesses, which are open sores on the cornea. They can be caused by an injury or when bacteria or a foreign object (such as lawn debris) scratches or damages the cornea. It is imperative that you get these treated promptly to avoid corneal scarring, which may lead to partial blindness.


Anytime someone experiences inflammation in the uvea (the inner level of the eye wall), it is referred to as uveitis. Uveitis is generally associated with autoimmune disorders; however, it can also be the result of a number of bacteria, fungi, or viruses. It has the potential to cause trauma to eye tissue and can result in visual impairment. It is quite easy to diagnose due to extreme eye redness, sensitivity to light, and eye pain. Not only will Dr. Croley treat your symptoms, but he will perform a series of tests to help identify the underlying cause of your infection.

Styes and Chalazia

Many patients confuse styes and chalazia, as each of them is an eyelid affliction that can be extremely easy to mistake by presentation and symptoms. However, chalazia and styes are distinct types of infections. A stye occurs when bacteria works its way into any one of your eyelash follicles. Then, a red bulge typically forms, either on the eyelid or internally, near the lash line. Styes might be little or large and can produce higher or lower levels of discomfort, depending on their size and location. A chalazion, on the other hand, is a congested or inflamed eyelid oil gland so it typically won’t appear on the eyelashes. Chalazia will often increase in size fairly slowly but can ultimately become the size of a chickpea. Chalazia do not usually cause pain; however, if they are left untreated and become substantial enough, they may impair vision.

What Does an Eye Infection Look Like?

Though infections of the eye are extremely common and quite treatable, even the slightest infection can result in a lot of pain. Those with eye infections can develop symptoms that range from mild to severe and can include irritation, teary eyes, inflamed eyelids, and eye discharge. Some types of infections, like styes, can create a cyst on the eyelid. Even though vision loss is unlikely with many kinds of infections, it can result in more serious cases. Therefore, it is critical to seek medical attention from an ophthalmologist if you suffer from persistent symptoms.

What Causes Eye Infections?

For the most part, common eye infections come from bacteria, a virus, or a fungus. They are usually passed on and caught by children and adults who are exposed to one of these infectious agents and then rub their eyes after neglecting to clean their hands. Some patients can acquire certain eye infections more frequently from wearing contact lenses. Therefore, it is recommended that you thoroughly wash your hands before inserting or removing your lenses. In addition, it is dangerous to share eye cosmetics. It is important to always dispose of any of these and not reuse them if you happen to get an eye infection.

How Are Eye Infections Diagnosed?

Arrange an eye screening at Cataract & Refractive Institute of Florida as soon as you recognize the symptoms of an eye infection. Dr. Croley will review your case and carry out a physical evaluation of your eye. He may perform further tests to determine the type of infection you have developed, which might include extracting an extremely small specimen from the affected area. It is a simple procedure, and the area will be completely numbed with a local anesthetic to ensure your comfort. Figuring out the type and trigger for the infection is essential to creating your treatment plan and avoiding infections down the road.

How Do You Treat an Eye Infection?

As soon as he performs a thorough eye assessment, Dr. Croley will be able to determine the best method to heal your eye infection. Your treatment plan will be based on the type of infection, location, and symptoms you are experiencing. For infections that are bacterial, Dr. Croley might prescribe oral or an eye-drop form of antibiotics. If you have significant inflammation, he could use eye drops, or perhaps injections that contain cortisone or a steroid. If you have a stye or chalazion that won’t go away with traditional treatment, minimally invasive surgery may be necessary.

Relief for Eye Infections

Despite the fact that eye infections are generally harmless, they can sometimes be quite serious and it can be very hard to tell which type you have on your own. If you do contract an eye infection, or if you have anything in your eye, you should seek medical attention right away at the Cataract & Refractive Institute of Florida. Dr. Croley is an experienced ophthalmologist who is diversely trained and skilled in detecting and treating eye infections. Reach out to our office in Cape Coral, Lehigh Acres, or Bonita Springs, FL.