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My personal experience with a foreign body in the eye: Part 2

In my previous blog post, I wrote about how I got a foreign body in my eye and went for examination while on my holiday in Barcelona.
Twenty-four hours after a piece of tree pollen (foreign body) had blown into my eye, I was still in discomfort, and my eyelid was becoming swollen.
I could not use the computer as my eye hurt, and the lids were red and inflamed. I was getting a bit worried. Because I am an ophthalmologist and have treated STFB so often, I decided to do something as I was still sure there was something under my eyelid. I got a cotton bud from a friend and on Sunday morning I gently everted the upper eyelid which isn’t an easy thing to do oneself. Then I gently wiped the cotton bud soaked in antibiotic and steroid over the conjunctiva underneath the lid, though I did not touch the eye at any time and I washed my hands before.
After that everything started to get a lot better. I think it was possibly psychological or there had been a little bit of organic tree pollen present which had not shown up very well when examined at the Institute. My self-treatment worked, and either it was the drops working, or it was me getting more relaxed. By the Monday evening, after continuing to put the antibiotic steroid drops in four times a day, everything was getting back to normal and I felt a lot better.
However, it was a lesson to me about how something so small and innocuous can seem to be a big problem and not knowing whether it was going to get better was one of the worst things. The gentleness and kindness shown to me in the eye emergency in Barcelona was wonderful. I have not thanked them on Google, but I will certainly speak very highly of them wherever I go. Also being a patient reminds me what it is like for my own patients when they attend for urgent eye care at Clinica London. We see a lot of patients with bits of grits or pollen that have blown into their eyes either walking along the road, near trees or a building site. We also see many people who have been working on their car, and the grit or rust fell in the eye.
Many STFB (subtarsal foreign body) will fall out or get rubbed out, and then there are just some marks left, which have to get treatment. It is a good idea to accept the advice of putting in some antibiotic drops and even a mixture with some steroid to help the eye feel comfortable and fight against infection while the tiny scratches on the surface heal.
Bits or foreign bodies (FBs) that fall into the eyes are not necessarily clean and can lodge in the eyelid or on the eye, so it is advisable to have the eye examined by an ophthalmologist. If the foreign body is quite light coloured and stuck under the eyelid, it can aggravate for days without treatment, once removed comfort is instantaneous.

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