A Meibomian cyst or chalazion is a cyst in the eyelid. The cyst is usually a result of an inflammation or obstructed meibomian gland. The Meibomian cyst can appear on the both lower and upper eyelid and it can affect persons of all age. It is not painful condition and in some cases it can disappear after several months without treatment.
The symptoms of the Meibomian cyst include swelling, tenderness of the eyelid, and sensitivity to light, feeling that the eyelid is heavy and increased tearing. In most cases the cyst is small, pea size, but if it is larger it can affect the vision causing blurry vision.
In order to diagnose the condition, the doctor specialized for eye conditions, an ophthalmologist, will perform physical examination and in most cases no additional tests will be necessary. If the patient has the Meibomian cyst which is a consequence of an infection, the ophthalmologist may prescribe topical antibiotics in the form of eye drops or ointment. It is also useful to use warm compressions on the cyst. In case the cyst continues to grow in size or it remains on the eyelid for a very long time, a corticosteroid injection may be given to a patient or the ophthalmologist may perform a surgery.
Commonly, the Meibomian cyst is connected to a condition called blepharitis which is chronicle inflammation of the eyelid. In this case proper eyelid hygiene is required. After applying the warm compression, you should clean the eyelid margins with a cotton wool bud which was dipped in the solution of sodium bicarbonate. The solution is prepared with cooled pint of boiled water and a teaspoon of sodium bicarbonate. Clean the eyelids twice a day for a few months for the optimal results.
In case the surgery has to be performed, the patient has to remember that this is not a complicated procedure and he/she will have to stay in the hospital just one day. Usually local anesthesia is given to the patient. The procedure depends on the size of the Meibomian cyst. For smaller cysts, the ophthalmologist will make a tiny incision at the back of the eyelid and remove the cyst. The patient will not have stitches in this case. In case the cyst is large, the incision will be made in front of the eyelid but the patient will not have scars since they will blend in with the surrounding wrinkles on the eyelid.