Posted by: juliegriffey | July 27, 2014

Hyphema – when and why your eye might look like an eight ball

hyphemaMy husband works in an ER, so it goes without saying that he sees a lot of people who are in BAD shape.  Therefore, I get an ear-full of REALLY gory stories. On a road trip recently, I was trapped in a car for several hours with my husband and unable to avoid his unsolicited medical lectures, so I learned all about a phenomena called “hyphema,” where your eye can take on the appearance of an eight ball.  The conversation got a little bit more interesting when I realized that Amcon products could be used for the prevention and treatment of this condition.

Hyphema can be caused by a variety of reasons (advanced diabetes, cancer and certain blood diseases), but the most common is trauma, i.e. you get whacked in the eye.  The trauma causes blood to fill the anterior chamber of the eye which results in a partial or full eight-ball appearance in the center of the eye.

Treatment plans for hyphema depend on the severity of the situation.  If it is mild, the blood in the eye is simply absorbed by the body and the eight ball look disappears naturally. It the bleeding recurs, then bed rest, sedation and medication (like cycloplegics and steroids) may be needed to diminish pressure in the eye.

The best way to deal with hyphemas is to avoid them altogether. After seeing many patients come into the ER with this condition, my husband has learned that not all hyphemas are due to bar fights.  Some are simply the result of an accident and could have been avoided by taking preventative measures. Unless you want your eyes to look like eight balls, safety glasses are the best method of avoiding a hyphema.



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