Often we put off visiting a doctor. But unfortunately there are cases of emergency when every minute counts and there is not time to be wasted! Visual system injuries demand URGENT help. One must with no delay (within hours after the injury) see an ophthalmologist! There cases though (listed below) when help should be provided even faster, immediately!
Chemical eye burns
Chemical burns are extremely dangerous as some matter can soak into the eye tissue within 15 seconds. Such burns are caused by alkalis (ammonia water solution, quick lime, etc.) and acids (acetic acid, nitric acid, etc.).
- If alkali or acid entered an eye, immediate rinsing with running water should be started (use drinking fountain, water tap, kettle, cup, etc.) Eyelids should be kept wide open. Rinsing should continue for 30 minutes.
- If there is first-aid box at hand use a special solution. Acids should be neutralized by 2% sodium carbonate solution, while alkalis – by 2% boric acid solution (or 1% acetic acid solution). The required concentration is achieved by dissolving 1 table spoon of sodium carbonate (boric acid powder) or 100 ml (1/3 glass) of 9% vinegar in one liter on lukewarm water, the solution should be injected from a ball or normal syringe (without needle). If eyelids cannot be widely opened use a thin tube on the syringe and insert it under eyelids from the outer corner.
- After rinsing go to see a doctor whenever possible!
Thermal eye burns
In case of thermal burns, i.e. burns caused by hot liquid, steam or flame severity of injury depends on the temperature.
In case of thermal burn use pain killer, apply cold wet cloth to the eyes and take the injured person to a hospital or emergency station in laying down position.
Eye contusion (blast injury, bruise)
Eye contusions can cause severe complications up to vision loss. Therefore do not try to self-diagnose and do not be deceived by the fact that the bruise started to disappear and the eye is not aching, moving normally and seeing as usual. Consequences of an eye contusion (like retinal damage or cataract development) can manifest themselves in several week or even years.
In case of injury apply dressing on both eyes, administer pain-killer and send the injured person to a hospital. The sooner this is done the better are the chances of preserving vision.
Foreign body in the eye
Each of us experienced eye winkers. Usually there is no problem to remove a foreign body. But if it is not washed out by tears and cannot be retrieved using a cotton swab and the eye continues to ache and photosensitivity is present, one should by all means visit a doctor. It is especially important if this could have happened during metal or wood processing, etc. A smallest chip can get even inside the eye. Many think that the “specks” are not dangerous as in many cases such injuries do not cause bleeding and visual disturbance. But this may cost you, literally and figuratively
If a foreign body entered the eye a dressing should be applied on both eyes and the injured person should be rushed to a hospital in the lying down position. If necessary anesthetic should be used.
Sudden vision loss in one eye
Sudden vision loss in one eye (total or partial, when a dark spot appears in the vision field) often is not accompanied by pain. It happens as a result of blood circulation disturbance in the eye retina. It usually happens to persons suffering from general blood circulation problems.
A Nitroglycerin pill should be administered under the tongue, ambulance should be called immediately. It is advisable to press the eyelid (1 to 2 seconds duration) to stimulate vascular distention.
Veil before the eyes
If veil is seen before the eyes or there is a feeling as if everything is seen through a water layer, flashes or lightnings are seen when eyes move, these could be symptoms of retinal detachment. This may happen after a great strain..
Call an ambulance. This condition requires transportation in laying down position. Both eyes should be covered with a bandage.
Vision drop with no apparent cause
Near vision drop while distant vision is preserved may happen as an effect of medications containing atropine or similar, or an infection development (botulism, diphtheria, etc.).
Vision activity should be stopped. Visit a doctor as soon as possible.
In the event of the visual organ injury or unpleasant sensations in the eye urgently see a doctor. Any minute is precious to save your vision.