FOREIGN BODY IN THE EYE

Presence of an external object or substance in the eye.

Causes

  • Solids: dust, insects, metal or wood particles
  • Liquids: Splashes of irritating fluids

Clinical features

  • Severe pain, tears, or redness
  • Foreign body (FB) may be visible

Differential diagnosis

  • Other injury or trauma

MANAGEMENT

  • Make a thin ‘finger’ of moistened cotton wool, move eyelid out of the way, and gently remove FB
  • If this fails, refer to an Eye Specialist

For irritating fluids in the eye

  • Wash the eye with plenty of clean water or normal saline

If the cornea is damaged

  • Apply tetracycline eye ointment 1%, cover the eye, and refer to an Eye Specialist