External hordeolum (Stye)

External hordeolum (Stye)

External Hordeolum
External Hordeolum

External Hordeolum is an acute inflammation of lash follicle and its associated glands of Zeis or Moll accompanied by pus formation.


1. Predisposing factors are as below:

  • Age: It is more common in children and young adults (though age is no bar) and in patients with eye strain due to muscle imbalance or refractive errors.
  • Habitual rubbing of the eyes or fingering of the lids and nose, chronic blepharitis and diabetes mellitus are usually associated with recurrent styes.
  • Metabolic factors, chronic debility, excessive intake of carbohydrates and alcohol also act as predisposing factors.

2. Causative organism commonly involved is staphylococcus aureus.

Clinical features of External hordeolum (stye)


  • Acute pain
  • Swelling of lid
  • Mild watering
  • Photophobia


  • Stage of cellulitis is characterised by localised, firm, red, tender swelling at the lid margin associated with marked oedema.
  • Usually, there is one stye, but occasionally, these may be multiple.
  • Stage of abscess formation is characterized by a visible pus point on the lid margin in relation to the affected cilia.

Treatment of External hordeolum ( stye)

  • Hot compression 2-3 times a day are very useful especially in cellulitis stage.
  • Evacuation of the pus should be done by epilating the involved cilia, when the pus point is formed.
  • Surgical incision is required rarely for a large abscess.
  • Antibiotic eye drops (3-4 times a day) and eye ointment (at bed time) should be applied to control the infection.
  • Systemic anti-inflammatory and analgesics relievepain and reduce oedema.
  • In reccurent styes, try to find out and treat the associated predisposing condition.

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