Skip to content

Definition of

A hordeolum, commonly known as a stye, is a localized infection or inflammation of the eyelid, usually caused by the bacteria Staphylococcus aureus. It typically appears as a red, painful lump near the edge of the eyelid and is often filled with pus. Styes can occur on the outer or inner part of the eyelid and may resolve on their own or require treatment, such as warm compresses and antibiotic ointments.

Definition of

A chalazion is a non-infectious bump or cyst that develops within the eyelid due to the blockage of an oil gland. It is usually painless but can cause swelling and tenderness. Chalazia can result from a residual inflammation after a stye has healed or due to other factors affecting the oil glands in the eyelid. Warm compresses are often recommended to help open up the blocked gland, and in some cases, surgical drainage or steroid injections may be necessary.

Risk factors for

  • Bacterial infection 
  • Blocked oil gland
  • Blepharitis
  • Weaked immune system
  • Hormonal changes
  • poor hygiene

A hordeolum, chalazion, or stye, is a common eyelid condition characterized by a tender, red lump that forms near the edge of the eyelid. Chalazions are typically caused by an infection of the oil glands in the eyelids, often due to the presence of bacteria, such as Staphylococcus aureus. They can occur externally on the eyelash follicles (external hordeolum) or internally inside the eyelid (internal hordeolum).

Treatment Types

Warm Compresses

 Applying warm compresses to the affected area several times a day can help reduce pain, swelling, and promote drainage of the chalazion.

Your eye care specialist may prescribe antibiotic ointments or oral antibiotics to combat the underlying infection and accelerate the healing process.

 Practicing proper eyelid hygiene by gently cleaning the affected eyelid with mild soap or cleanser can help prevent the spread of infection and promote healing.

 It is advisable to avoid using eye makeup or contact lenses until the chalazion has resolved to prevent further irritation or infection.

In some cases, a chalazion may require an incision and drainage procedure performed in-office to relieve symptoms and facilitate healing.



Steroid injections are generally not a standard or common treatment for a hordeolum (stye). Hordeolum is typically caused by a bacterial infection, most commonly due to Staphylococcus aureus, and it often resolves on its own or with conservative treatments.

While these factors contribute to the development of a stye, individual susceptibility can vary, and not everyone with these risk factors will develop a hordeolum.

It is important to note that if the symptoms worsen, the stye does not improve within a few days, or if there are signs of spreading infection (such as fever or severe pain), it is recommended to seek medical attention as it may require further evaluation and treatment.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a Stye?

A hordeolum, commonly known as a stye, is a localized infection or inflammation of the eyelid. It typically appears as a red, swollen bump on the eyelid and can be painful.

The primary cause of a hordeolum is a bacterial infection, usually by Staphylococcus aureus. Other factors that contribute to its development include poor hygiene, blocked oil glands, blepharitis, weakened immune system, and hormonal changes.

Styes themselves are not contagious, but the bacteria that cause them can be spread from person to person through direct contact. It is important to practice good hygiene, such as washing hands regularly and avoiding touching or rubbing the eyes, to prevent the spread of bacteria.

In most cases, a hordeolum will resolve on its own within a week or two. It may start as a small bump and gradually increase in size before eventually draining and healing. Applying warm compresses can help speed up the healing process.

It is generally not recommended to pop or squeeze a stye. Doing so can potentially spread the infection and worsen the inflammation. If the stye does not improve within a few days or becomes increasingly painful, it is best to consult a healthcare professional for proper treatment.

Home remedies for hordeolum include applying warm compresses to the affected area for 10-15 minutes several times a day. This can help reduce inflammation and promote drainage. It is also important to maintain good eyelid hygiene by gently cleaning the eyelids with a mild cleanser.

While most styes can be managed at home, it is advisable to seek medical attention if the stye does not improve within a few days, becomes increasingly painful, affects vision, or if there are signs of spreading infection such as fever or swollen lymph nodes.

It is generally recommended to avoid wearing makeup or contact lenses while you have a stye. Makeup can further irritate the affected area, and contact lenses can potentially worsen the infection or delay healing. It is best to wait until the stye has completely healed before using makeup or wearing contact lenses again.