Eye care card

Information for patients from the Emergency Department

Please speak to a healthcare professional before following the advice below

A doctor / nurse practitioner has examined your eye today, and you have been diagnosed with a corneal abrasion / foreign object in your eye. The foreign object has been removed, or part of it has. Please be aware that metal foreign bodies may leave a rust ring.

If after using the drops / ointment you develop severe pain, redness, soreness, blurred vision, or if you are worried, please go back to the hospital that treated you. If they are closed, go to the Emergency Department at William Harvey Hospital Ashford.

How do I use my eye ointment?

Using eye ointment

How do I use my eye drops?

Using eye drops

How will my eye feel after the ointment / drops?

Your vision may be blurred for a short time afterwards. Do not drive or operate machinery until you can see clearly again.

What if I have a foreign body in my eye?

The doctor / nurse treating your eye may need to use local anaesthetic eye drops to numb your eye. This is so they can look at your eye and remove the foreign body without hurting you. The drops will sting, but only for a few seconds.

Your eye may feel okay when you leave hospital, but it may become uncomfortable again after about 30 minutes, as the local anaesthetic drops wear off. Use the treatment given to you by the doctor / nurse. If you have been prescribed eye ointment or drops, please follow the instructions above. If you have been given Chloramphenicol ointment / drops, please use these four times a day.

Should your eye give you some discomfort, you may take painkillers (such as paracetamol or ibuprofen) as advised by the doctor / nurse.

Do not rub or scratch your eye. Wearing sunglasses and avoiding bright lights for the first 24 hours will help.

Why have I been given an eye patch to wear?

You may need to wear an eye patch for two hours after the object has been removed from your eye, for comfort until you get home. Depending on how bad your injury is, you may be advised by the doctor or nurse to keep the patch on for 24 hours or longer.

Please do not smoke while wearing the patch, as they can ignite if exposed to a flame.

Can I drive straightaway?

We advise you not to drive following removal of the foreign body until the next day. If you have to drive, the patch must be removed before driving.

Please arrange for someone to collect you from hospital and take you home. Once you are in the car, you should close the windows and switch off the ventilation, to reduce the risk of any dust getting into your eye.

Will I need to come back to the hospital for a check-up?

If you still have any eye irritation after two or three days, you should return to the department that treated you so your eye can be reviewed. Return earlier if you develop severe pain, further redness, soreness and / or blurred vision, or if you are concerned in any way.

If after three days you have no further concerns, please continue to use the eye ointment for a further two days.