What is endophthalmitis?
Endophthalmitis is a serious inner eye infection. It is most frequently caused by bacteria entering the eye during invasive eye procedures or surgery. It can also occur in association with general surgery, systemic infection, or eye injury. Endophthalmitis is a medical emergency and can result in vision loss.
What are the symptoms of endophthalmitis?
Most post-operative endophthalmitis has a sudden onset of decreased vision and increasing eye pain and redness within a few days after surgery. On occasion, the onset of symptoms may be more gradual over weeks to months. Because of the visual-threatening nature of this condition you should contact your doctor as soon as you develop symptoms.
How is endophthalmitis diagnosed?
Diagnosis is based on thorough clinical exam. Early diagnosis and treatment is vital for preventing vision loss. A sample of vitreous fluid from the eye is removed and sent for culture to determine the causative organism.
What is the treatment for endophthalmitis?
In most cases, regardless of the cause, endophthalmitis can be treated in the office with injection of antibiotics into the eye. Topical medications are also used in addition to the injections. In some cases, surgery in the operating room may be necessary. If endophthalmitis is related to a systemic infection, hospitalization is often warranted to treat the underlying condition.