A sty is a pimple or abscess that forms in either the upper or lower eyelid. The medical term for sty is hordeolum(say HOR-dee-oh-lumm) and it is an infection caused by bacteria that normally live peacefully on the eyelid skin surface.
Some of thee germs get trapped along with dead skin cells inside crypts along the eyelid margin. Stys are usually superficial and plainly visible. Occasionally they can reside deeper within the eyelid.
This common infection or inflammation results from blocked glands within the eyelid. When the gland is blocked, the oil produced by the gland occasionally backs up and extrudes through the wall of the gland, forming a lump, which can be red, painful, and nodular. Frequently, bacteria can infect the blocked gland, causing increased inflammation, pain, and redness of the eye and even redness of the surrounding eyelid and cheek tissue.
The lump can point externally (outward) or internally (inward). Frequently, the lump appears with a visible whitish or yellowish spot that looks much like a large pimple.
An external sty starts as a pimple next to an eyelash. It turns into a red, painful swelling that usually lasts several...