Posted by: Georgia Eye Partners in News and Updates

Corneal abrasion

Irritation in the eye, especially after sleeping in contacts or a brush with a fingernail or tree branch, may indicate the presence of a corneal abrasion. One of the most common injuries we see, corneal abrasions can be especially damaging to the eye if neglected.

The cornea is the clear dome in the front of the eye, and it is made up of multiple layers.  An abrasion involves a scratch of the outermost skin layer the cornea, called the epithelium.  Most corneal abrasions heal relatively quickly.

Common symptoms of a corneal abrasion include:

  • Pain
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Tearing
  • Redness
  • Blurred vision or loss of vision

Although corneal scratches are self-limiting and may heal within a day or two, it is necessary to visit a trained eye doctor to determine an appropriate plan for treatment. If an abrasion involves a tree branch or other vegetation, the cornea should also be monitored to prevent a possible fungal infection. Although an infection is rare, serious corneal problems can occur, including scarring.

If you believe you have suffered a corneal abrasion, it is important to immediately rinse the eye to remove any debris that may have caused the injury. If you wear contact lenses, discard them to prevent any further damage to the eye.

Once you have rinsed the eye, schedule an appointment with Georgia Eye Partners to receive a full assessment of the abrasion. Depending on the size and location of the injury, your doctor may prescribe antibiotics, pain medication, and artificial tears. In cases of larger abrasions, a bandage contact lens may be necessary to aid in comfort and healing.

Only a trained eye doctor can properly diagnose a corneal abrasion and develop the right treatment plan to help you recover as quickly as possible. For more information on scheduling your appointment with Georgia Eye Partners, visit

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