Eye pain can be caused by numerous conditions, however, before it can be effectively treated, the underlying cause needs to be identified. While eye pain can simply be attributed to eye strain, it can be indicative of a serious ocular or even systemic health disorder. If you visit a health care center because of your eye pain, here are some diagnostic and treatment interventions you can expect from the provider.
Anesthetic Eye Drops And Eye Examination
Before the physician, nurse practitioner, or physician's assistant examines your eyes, they might instill an anesthetic eye drop into the affected eye, especially if you are experiencing severe pain. Doing so will help keep you comfortable during your eye examination, which may involve shining a bright light into your eyes to assess how your pupils react.
In addition to examining your eyes with an instrument called an ophthalmoscope, you may also get a slit lamp examination. For this eye examination, you will sit in a chair with your forehead against the forehead rest of the slit lamp and your chin will be resting in the chin rest part of the lamp.
Your eyes, including your retina and blood vessels, will be examined for any abnormalities, your eye pressure may also be tested to rule out glaucoma, and your eyes will be examined for any debris or other foreign bodies that may be embedded in your cornea.
Treatment Interventions For Eye Pain
After the provider has completed your eye examination, they will recommend a treatment plan. If your eye pain is caused by a bacterial infection, they will prescribe either an oral antibiotic or a local antibiotic eye drop or ointment. If you have a foreign body inside of your eye, they will attempt to remove it. After the debris has been removed, your eye pain may subside in a day or so.
If your eye examination revealed elevated intraocular pressure, it may indicate the presence of a type of glaucoma called acute-angle glaucoma. In this case, the provider may prescribe beta blocker eye drops to help lower your intraocular pressure and then refer you to an ophthalmologist. Further, if your eye examination was inconclusive, your will be referred back to your primary care doctor for further evaluation and treatment.
If you develop eye pain, seek medical attention at a health care center or other medical facility to determine the cause. Early diagnosis and treatment for eye pain and other health conditions can help ensure that treatment is more successful for a better outcome.