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Eye and Vision Care

Sharp Pain in Eyes When Closed

05/12/2010

Question:

i woke up in the middle of the night with sharp pains in both eyes. i was welding the day before and work a hood. i tried that patato trick and it seem to have helped but i still have the pain. i dont know if i may have burnt my eyes and if i did how long tell they will heal. i have welded with my hood many times before and never had a problem.

okease help

Answer:

It sounds like you may have a corneal "flash burn," also known as radiation keratitis. This is like getting severe sunburn on the exterior of your eyes; and every time you blink, you irritate the sensitive corneal tissue.

The good news is that it usually does not cause any permanent damage like scarring or blindness. However, as you know, the pain, blur, tearing, and light sensitivity are intense.

Eye doctors can treat this condition with ocular medicines that will reduce your symptoms and shorten the healing time.  

For more information:

Go to the Eye and Vision Care health topic, where you can:

Response by:

Robert D Newcomb, OD, MPH, FAAO Robert D Newcomb, OD, MPH, FAAO
Professor Emeritus of Clinical Optometry
College of Optometry
The Ohio State University