A broken vessel in eye, which is also known as subconjunctival hemorrhage, is not usually a harmful condition. It occurs and clears on its own within a few weeks. Subconjunctival is a situation that refers to the space that is found just beneath the conjunctiva or that clear surface you see in your eye and hemorrhage refers to the breaking of the tiny blood vessels in the eye. Many people don’t realize they have broken blood vessels, and they only come to know about it when someone else tells them. A person may also look in the mirror and see the broken vessels.
The condition is not usually painful and it mostly develops after having a blunt trauma in the eye. Treatment may not be needed in most of the cases except when something serious develops– which is unlikely to happen. However, should you have any complications with broken vessels in eye; you need to consult with a doctor immediately.
How do broken vessels in eye occur?
When the delicate vessels of blood or capillaries found in the eye break, they can cause this problem. In the eye, the tiny blood vessels are found beneath the layer of tissue that covers the white of eye or conjunctiva. This results in eye redness meaning that you have subconjunctival hemorrhage.
Despite the conspicuousness of this condition, it does not present problems or cause discomforts. However, redness found in eye could also mean a potentially serious condition. Whenever you have redness in eye and it is accompanied by eye discharge, this should signal a serious condition. You should visit a doctor since it could signal an onset of glaucoma.
What are the causes of broken blood vessels in eye?
The most obvious sign that comes with subconjunctival hemorrhage is that bright red patch which you see in the white or sclera of eye. The part that appears white is the eye is called the sclera. Conjunctiva is that thin, normal clear and moist membrane, which covers the white part or sclera of the eye and the inner part of eyelids.
There are different things that may cause the redness or broken blood vessels including heavy lifting, vomiting, powerful sneezing, and violent coughing. These activities may make the tiny blood vessels to rupture and leak blood to the surrounding tissue.
A sudden increase in pressure that is created by activities like sneezing, coughing, and heavy lifting or constipation could make tiny blood vessels in eye to break. Some drugs like blood thinners including aspirin and warfarin may also cause such a problem.
A cataract surgery may also be implicated in the cause of broken blood vessels in eye. At times, the break of the vessels may be caused by roughly rubbing the eye, trauma such as some foreign objects injuring the eye, or having a severe infections.
When to see a doctor
You may not need to see a doctor when you have broken blood vessel in eye because it will most likely clear on its own. However, there are times when you should consider visiting a doctor especially if the redness does not clear or it is accompanied by some other signs such as discharge or pain and discomforts.
While having subconjunctival hemorrhage may seldom present dangers, at times, the blood appearing on the front chamber of eyes in the area between iris and cornea may be a serious condition such as hyphema. This needs immediate treatment to prevent complications.
In diagnosing the broken vessels, eye doctors make simple examinations to know the cause and the nature of the condition. Until it is properly examined, you should not assume that it is subconjunctival hemorrhage. The doctors ask about your medical history and if you have had any trauma or taken some medications.
The aim is to get a clue of what could be causing this problem. The doctor may want to know if you have had a strong coughing experience or some other complications, which could create pressure in eye and cause tiny blood vessels to break.
Treatment of broken blood vessel in eye
Most of the times, subconjunctival hemorrhage may not need treatment. The blood vessels repair on their own and the condition disappears. However, if you experience some discomforts, you may need to see a doctor or use over the counter medicines. You should avoid taking blood thinners such as aspirins as they increase the chances of bleeding.
When the cause is due to trauma, there is need to have other treatment that promote the healing process. An infection causing broken blood vessels should be treated probably using antibiotic eye drops. You should visit an optician to examine your eye and recommend the right treatment. Remember the use of antibiotics should be done cautiously because of the issue of resistance of some of the bacterial strains. Improper use can lead to resistance of certain strains of bacteria that cause infections.