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KULITI: Sty in the Eye

Posted May 05 2013 12:00am
There’s a stigma attached to having “kuliti” (hodeolum or sty) in the eye, and that is having a habit of secretly sneaking and maliciously looking on somebody’s private parts. In other words, you are a “Peeping Tom.” Well, there might be a medical basis on this accusation as you might be putting your eye in dirty peepholes as you sneak and peek, but not all who gets kuliti are sex maniacs. People of all ages can develop kuliti, and men and women are equally affected. There is a slight increase in the incidence of kuliti in people in their 30s to 50s. 

People with certain chronic conditions (diabetes mellitus, chronic blepharitis or inflammation of the eyelid, seborrhoea or chronic inflammatory skin disorder, and other chronic debilitating illnesses are more prone to develop kuliti than the general population. In many susceptible people, stress seems to trigger the development of kuliti. Studies have also shown that those who have high levels of blood lipids (fats) are more susceptible to blockages in the oil glands, including the glands of the eyelid and are, therefore, more likely to develop a kuliti
Kuliti is a tender, painful red bump located at the base of an eyelash or under or inside the eyelid. It results from a localized infection of the glands or a hair follicle of the eyelid. It results from an infection of the oil (meibomian) glands of the eyelid that help to lubricate the eyeball. The infection occurs after these glands have become clogged. A kuliti may also arise from an infected hair follicle at the base of an eyelash. However, in most cases, kuliti is caused by bacteria, most commonly Staphylococcus bacteria, frequently found on the skin. 
Kuliti is harmless in the majority of cases, and it ruptures on its own within a few days to a week, leading to relief from symptoms. It often recurs, but it does not cause damage to the eye. Kuliti is sometimes confused with a chalazion which is a form of scarring of the glands in the eyelid that may include the formation of cysts. It is the most common complication that develops from kuliti. A chalazion is usually painless and may already require medical or surgical treatment. 
The first signs and symptoms of kuliti are usually redness, tenderness, and pain in the affected area. The eye may feel irritated or itchy. Later signs and symptoms may include swelling, discomfort during blinking of the eye, watering of the eye, and sensitivity to light. A common sign of kuliti is a small, yellowish spot at the center of the bump that represents pus rising to the surface. 
The application of a warm compress or warm washcloth to the affected area for 10 minutes, four to six times a day, can speed rupture of the kuliti and aid in the relief of symptoms. You can also gently scrub the eyelid with tap water or with a mild, non-irritating soap, or baby shampoo may also help with drainage. Close your eyes as you scrub so you do not injure your eyes. Do not squeeze or puncture the kuliti because a more serious infection may occur as a result. 
Antibiotic ointments and/or steroid ointments sometimes are prescribed to treat kuliti. Over-the-counter pain medications may be used to alleviate pain and tenderness. Contact lenses and eye makeup should never be worn during treatment. 
It is always better to consult an ophthalmologist to prescribe you the right treatment, and especially if any of the following problems occur: the eye is swollen shut; redness appears around the entire eye; any change or disturbance in vision; swelling that lasts for more than three weeks; bleeding; falling out of eyelashes; the kuliti is located on the bottom eyelid, near the nose; pus or thick discharge continues to drain from the eye; excessive persistent tearing; and fever higher than 38 degrees Celsius. 
Nobody can completely avoid getting kuliti, but good hygienic practices, including proper hand washing, can help prevent all forms of infection. Other measures to prevent kuliti include: not sharing cosmetics or cosmetic eye tools, like eyelash curlers or combs, with others; keeping eye tools clean; discarding old or contaminated eye makeup; keeping all cosmetics clean; and not touching the eye and surrounding areas. 
And don’t peek at other people’s private parts not because you may get kuliti, but because you may just get caught and go to jail. Hahaha.
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