Chalazion/Stye

A Chalazion, sometimes called a Stye is a lump or cyst on the eyelid. The oil glands that produce part of the tear film can be blocked which causes this condition. It can occur anywhere on the eyelid.

Symptoms of a Chalazion/Stye

  • small lump on the eyelid
  • may cause mild pain or irritation
  • Rarely, it gets infected. It then becomes more swollen, red, and painful.

Treatment for a Chalazion/Stye

  • Often no treatment is required as they usually resolve on their own over time. If it doesn’t cause any problems, it is best to wait and see if it settles.
  • Hot compressescan help to ease discomfort
  • Massage of the cyst
  • Cleaning the eyelid
  • Occasionally a small incision is needed if it doesn’t settle or is infected. This small procedure can be done in the rooms

Good eyelid hygiene is essential for the prevention and treatment. Follow the below steps to ease symptoms:


Acute Stage

A Chalazion usually resolves on its own; however, sometimes medical attention is required. A lump outside or inside the lid might be noticed along with redness, tenderness and swelling and discharge may occur. Gentle massage and warm compresses on the eyelid with a warm cloth twice a day helps to unblock the drain and gland in the cyst. Additionally, cleaning of the eyelid with a cotton bud soaked in water and baby shampoo will assist in resolving the problem. If medical attention is required the doctor might prescribe antibiotic ointment in addition to the above. The lump may need a small in-rooms procedure when antibiotic treatment has been unsuccessful or the lump is of a substantial size. A minor incision will be made to drain any fluid.

Chronic Stage

Surgical removal is only required if treatment is unsuccessful and the lump is causing symptoms after a few weeks. Surgical removal will be undertaken in a day surgery unit, usually under a local anaesthetic. It is a minor procedure, however, in rare cases infection can occur which requires antibiotic treatment.


If the whole eyelid is red and swollen (cellulitis) please see your GP to commence oral antibiotics. An incision is only performed after any cellulitis has settled.




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