Hyphema is defined as the buildup of blood in the region amidst the iris and cornea. The blood might prevent light from reaching the back of the eye or cause an increase in the eye pressure. In case the root cause is not treated, it can lead to lasting vision loss.
What are the possible causes?
Hyphema is typically brought about by the following:
- Eye injuries
- Medical conditions such as tumors, diabetes, poor blood flow to the eye and inflammation
What are the signs?
The usual indications of the condition include the following:
- Reduced vision or blurred vision
- Light sensitivity
- Eye pain or sensation of pressure within the eye
- Buildup of blood in the front region of the iris
Management of hyphema
Generally, the buildup of blood will subside on its own. Oftentimes, the doctor might instruct the individual to:
- Avoid bending or engage in strenuous activities
- Rest in bed with the head elevated on several cushions
- Use an eye shield for eye protection
- Apply eye drops to lessen the irritation and swelling or lower the eye pressure
- Avoid using blood thinners such as ibuprofen or aspirin.
In some cases, surgery might be necessary to clear the blood from the front region of the eye. Surgical intervention might be required for the following:
- Blood fills the entire anterior region of the eye
- Recurrent eye bleeding
- Sickle cell disease
- High eye pressure even with care
- Blood in the anterior of the eye begins to discolor the cornea
The potential for eye bleeding to occur again is in the initial week after the bleeding has started. In case the eye does not start to bleed again, hyphema will recuperate in 1-2 weeks based on the amount of blood present.