The most common bacterial infection of the eye is conjunctivitis, an infection of the conjunctiva, which is the thin membrane lining the eyelid and the visible part of the eye. Bacterial conjunctivitis has symptoms including sore gritty irritation in the eye causing redness and inflammation of the infected eye and eyelid; also with a sticky discharge and crust formation on the eyelids that can make the eyes stick together.
Blepharitis or inflammation of the eyelid can be caused by infection with staphylococcus bacteria. Symptoms include redness, itching, irritation, with a gritty sensation or sense of foreign body in the eye and crust formation at the edge of the eyelids.
A stye is an infection in the sebaceous gland at the base of an eyelash hair follicle on the eyelid. It appears as a small red bump on the outside of the lid and can cause discomfort, swelling of the eyelid, redness, scratchy sensation, burning, drooping eyelid.
Bacterial keratitis is an infection of the cornea (the clear area at the front of the eye over the lens and pupil), usually following a scratch or an injury. This causes inflammation of the cornea and can cause problems with eyesight if not treated.
Antibiotic treatments for the eye
A topical ointment containing the antibiotic chloramphenicol can be used to treat and prevent the spread of infection and is used mainly to treat conjunctivitis.
Fusidic acid is another topical antibiotic that is applied as eye drops that mix with the tears and cover the surface of the eye evenly to prevent blurring of vision. They are used to treat most eye infections.