A chalazion is a deep eyelid cyst. It is caused by the blockage of oil glands on the inner margin of the eyelids. As the gland continues to produce oil the cyst slowly grows and can become quite large. However chalazia are rarely painful.

Risk Factors

  • Blepharitis
  • Poor eye make-up removal
  • Dusty environments
  • Rosacea
  • Previous chalazia


Conservative treatment aims to get the fluid within the chalazion to drain on its own. This may include using warm compresses and massage. Antibiotics may be prescribed if the chalazion is infected.

If the chalazion persists then a minor surgical procedure can be performed to open the cyst and drain its contents. This procedure is performed on site in our state-of-the-art minor surgical procedure room. During the procedure local anaesthetic is given to the eyelid. The surgery is performed on the underside of the eyelid so there are no scars after the operation. An orthoptist will cover your eye with an eye pad before you go home. Please be aware that if you are intending to have your cyst removed at your appointment you will need to have someone to drive you home.

It is not uncommon for a chalazion to reoccur or for more chalazia to develop especially if any risk factors remain. As with any surgery there are possible risks and complications which your ophthalmologist will go through with you before you elect to proceed.