Posted - February 24, 2022


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What is a chalazion?

A chalazion is a swollen bump on the eyelid. It happens when the eyelid’s oil gland clogs up. It may start as an internal hordeolum (stye). When you first get a stye, your eyelid is probably red, swollen, and tender to the touch. Your eye may also feel sore and scratchy. As it grows, you may see a head to the chalazion similar to a pimple. If the chalazion becomes large, it can press on your eye and cause blurry vision. Rarely, the whole eyelid might swell.

Who is most likely to get a chalazion?

Anyone can get a chalazion. But you are even more likely to get one if you have:

  • Blepharitis, a problem that affects the edge of your eyelid
  • Had a chalazion before
  • A skin condition, such as acne rosacea or seborrheic dermatitis
  • Diabetes or other medical problems

What are chalazion symptoms?

  • A painful red swollen bump along the edge of the eyelid at the base of the eyelashes.
  • It may make the entire eyelid swell.
  • Usually a small pus spot at the center of the bump
  • Feeling like something is in your eye having a scratchy feeling in the eye
  • Being sensitive to light
  • Crustiness along the eyelid margin
  • Tearing in that eye

How is a chalazion treated?

  • Warm compresses
  • Antibiotics. Your ophthalmologist may prescribe an antibiotic for an infected stye.
  • Steroid shots. If your chalazion is very swollen, your ophthalmologist may give you a steroid shot (cortisone) to reduce the swelling.
  • Surgery to drain the area. If your chalazion affects vision or does not go away, you may need to have it drained. This surgery is usually done in the doctor’s office using local anesthesia.


A chalazion is a small, painful bump at the base of your eyelash or under the eyelid. It is usually caused by a clogged oil gland. It often causes the eyelid to swell. Treatments range from warm compresses to medication, based on what your ophthalmologist sees. In some cases, surgery may be needed to drain the chalazion.


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