What is pink eye?

What is pink eye?

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By Faryal Arif, MD | Hoag Urgent Care

Conjunctivitis, also known as pink eye, is often seen more commonly around this time of the year, spring and summer being peak season. The lining of the eye, the conjunctiva, may appear red and irritated. Common symptoms include itching, a foreign body sensation in the eye, mild pain and eye discharge. Pink eye tends to be very contagious and it is recommended to avoid rubbing eyes and washing hands frequently. Discontinuation of contact lens usage is also recommended.

Most commonly, pink eye tends to be due to allergies or due to a viral infection. In these cases, it is self limited and will respond to cool compresses and over the counter eye drops such as anti-histamine eye drops and lubricant eye drops. Symptoms typically last for a few days.

However, if pink eye is more severe, and there is more cloudy, purulent eye discharge especially with crusting and sticking together of eye lids, it may be due to a bacterial infection. If you are experiencing these symptoms, please follow up for evaluation with your doctor or at one of our urgent care locations for treatment. 

Faryal Arif is a board certified family physician who has been with Hoag Urgent Care for over 5 years. She completed her residency at Pomona Valley Hospital Medical Center and medical degree at King Edward Medical University in Pakistan.  She enjoys the unique challenge and dynamic environment that urgent care presents and has a particular interest in pediatrics and infectious disease. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with her two children, reading, staying active, loves her Peloton and is a big foodie.