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Corneal Abrasion (cont.)

Corneal Abrasion Prevention

To avoid eye injuries, you should adhere to the following preventive measures:

  • Wear protective eyewear while participating in certain sports, such as racquetball.
  • Wear protective eyewear in situations where objects may fly into your eyes. This might include wearing glasses or sunglasses while hiking to avoid windblown objects, as well as wearing protective eyewear that gives 180-degree protection while using a grinding wheel or hammering on metal. For welding, special eyewear is available and should be worn at all times.
  • Wear protective eyewear to block ultraviolet radiation when you are in bright sunlight for long periods of time. This is especially important while skiing on water or on the beach because the reflection of sunlight off the snow, water, or light sand in combination with direct sunlight causes a doubling of sunlight exposure, potentially leading to corneal flash burns.

Corneal Abrasion Prognosis

Corneal abrasions usually heal completely within 24-48 hours of the injury. However, in some cases, they may occasionally heal poorly and then recur without additional trauma. This condition is known as a recurrent corneal erosion and will sometimes follow an injury due to an evergreen branch or fingernail.

Other causes of eye pain and eye injuries may take longer to heal or may require more extensive treatment by your ophthalmologist.

Corneal Abrasion Pictures

Basic anatomy of the eye
Basic anatomy of the eye. Click to view larger image.

Cross-section of the orbit with anatomical view of the extraocular muscles in the eye.
Cross-section of the orbit with anatomical view of the extraocular muscles in the eye. Click to view larger image.

ultraviolet radiation
This corneal abrasion appears as a yellow-green area when stained with fluorescein and viewed with a blue light. Click to view larger image.

Medically reviewed by William Baer, MD; Board Certified Ophthalmology


Arbour, J.D., I. Brunette, H.M. Boisjoly, Z.H. Shi, J. Dumas, and M.C. Guertin. "Should We Patch Corneal Erosions?" Arch Ophthalmol 115.3 Mar. 1997: 313-317.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 12/17/2015

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