Learn more about Chalazion, including The Symptoms, The Causes, and The Treatments.

The information below is not intended for self diagnose of an eye condition. If you are worried or suffering from an eye problem, please call us on 0208 524 2887 and book in to see us.

Bhavita Magudia
Chalazion - Explained
February 3, 2019
Back to Common Eye Conditions

What Is Chalazion

Chalazion is a cyst of the meibomian oil gland caused by blockage/inflammation; the oil glands are located on the lid margin of the eyes just behind your lashes. The meibomian oil gland becomes blocked by inflammation and a tender lump develops. The tender lump is a chalazion or is also known as a meibomian cyst. The chalazion can vary in size and may get bigger, with early lid cleaning hygiene and massage of the eyelids it can spontaneously discharge. If the chalazion is left and not treated at the early stages they become more solidified and the tenderness dissipates.  A chalazion is usually benign and can be left alone, however cosmetically they may not be appeasing if they are quite large.

Chalazia are multiple chalazions.

Chalazion - Symptoms

• Lump or swelling on the upper or lower eyelids

• Tenderness of the eyelid in the early stages

• Redness

• Watery or sore eyes

• Heavy feeling of the eyelid

• Later stages a non-tender round swelling

• Possible mild conjunctivitis with the tender or non tender swelling

Visit your optician to rule out any eyelid cellulitis or other eye conditions and confirm diagnosis of chalazion.

Chalazion - Causes

• Inflammation such as blepharitis

• Viral conjunctivitis

• Rosacea of the eyes and/or skin

• Acne

• Eye infections

• Seborrhoeic dermatitis

• Over population of microorganisms around the eyelashes causing inflammation

Chalazion - Treatments

Chalazion can reoccur, maintain good lid hygiene and meibomian gland care

1. Cleaning your eyelids and lashes using preservative free lid wipes called blephasol, especially if you have a pre-existing condition like blepharitis. Lid hygiene is important.

2. Hot compresses with a heated eye bag for at least 20 minutes, twice a day. The heat will cause the blockage (chalazion) in the meibomian gland to soften. Lay back, with your eyes closed, place the warmed eye bag across your closed eyes and relax.  Hot compresses should be done twice a day to encourage contents of the chalazion to soften and expel, follow this with lid massage. (You can use a flannel soaked in very warm water and then ring out any excess water. The flannel will cool down quickly and you will have to re-soak it in warm water.)

3. Massage the eyelids at least 10 times, twice a day. The massage should be firm but not cause you pain. Massage the eyelids with your forefinger, moving your finger towards the base of the lashes (upper lid, move finger down to the lashes. lower lid, move the finger up to the lashes). You can also apply circular massage over the chalazion too. The massage techniques will hopefully cause the contents of the chalazion to disperse, which is ideal. Always massage after the eyelids have been thoroughly heated with an eye bag or flannel.

4. Antibiotic eye ointment to reduce and remove the inflammation

5. Curettage of the chalazion via a minor operation, this is only done if all conventional treatments fail and the chalazion is causing further complications to the eyes.