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Eyelid bumps or styes. I'm Dr. Alan Greene and let's talk about what they are and what you do about them. That common eyelid bump, usually a stye, happens when one of the little glands right around the edge of the eyelid get plugged or partially plugged. You get a bump there that's really sort of like a pimple from acne, except it's actually the eye. And it will generally go away on it's own after a while, but you can speed it up by doing warm compresses on the eye maybe 10 minutes at a time with a warm washcloth, 4 times a day or so. And that will help it go through its whole process much more quickly.
Sometimes that bump will get completely plugged and it will get something that's quite painful and red, called a chalazion. And you use the same thing there - the warm compresses. But if it's not going away, that's the time you want to call your doctor to see if something else should be done.
Reviewed last on: 2/12/2009
Alan Greene, MD, FAAP, Department of Pediatrics, Stanford University School of Medicine, Lucile Packard Children's Hospital; Chief of Future Health, A.D.A.M., Inc. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.