Bloodshot Eye

The red eye is a very common problem that can be caused by several causes. It can be, for example, bleeding in the conjunctiva or inflammation in the eye. Often the discomfort disappears by itself but sometimes specific treatment is needed.

The red eye appears when there is a rupture of some capillary or if there is dilatation of the blood vessels. The eye then looks red and irritated. In the capillary break, the area of the capillary rupture is red, it can even affect the entire white area of the eye.

In addition to the red-eye, patients can have other symptoms: Pain in the eye, inflamed eye, eye stuck, blurry vision.

Causes of Red Eye

  • Alterations in the eyelids as styes or inflammations in the eyelids.
  • Allergies.
  • Eye infections or conjunctivitis.
  • Strange body.
  • Disturbances caused by contact lenses.
  • Capillary break.
  • Closed-angle glaucoma, which also produces intense pain and vision loss.

When to Look for Help

Most problems with the red eye usually disappear by themselves without treatment. The rush to go to the ophthalmologist will depend on some symptoms or others. So we can establish:

Request a scheduled appointment with the doctor, without needing an emergency if:

  • There is red-eye in addition to discharge that does not disappear in 5 days in spite of hygienic measures like washes with physiological serum.
  • Eyelid discomforts that do not disappear after a week.
  • Conjunctival hemorrhages that do not go away in a week in children or in two weeks in adults.

Go urgently if:

  • Red eye with vesicles on the face.
  • In addition to the red eye, it hurts and have a strange body sensation.
  • Something has got into your eye and you have not been able to remove it.

Go to immediate urgency if:

  • You have a red eye, vision loss, and significant pain.


For minor discomfort, our doctors can try to solve it by cleaning the eyelids with saline, using neutral shampoo for eyelid cleaning, artificial tears for the dry eye sensation and mild irritations…

Any process of red-eye in which no improvement is appreciated within 48 hours with the prescribed therapy, requires ophthalmological assessment. A painful red eye should be considered an emergency since in most cases an early therapeutic attitude can be definitive for visual function.

For more severe problems, your ophthalmologist will schedule the most appropriate treatment after the exploration of your eye.

At Harley Street Hospital, we have the best doctors to diagnose and treat a bloodshot eye. Book a consultation to get a specialist´s opinion.