What Is a Corneal Ulcer?

A corneal ulcer is an open sore on the cornea. The cornea covers the iris and the round pupil, much like a watch crystal covers the face of a watch. A corneal ulcer usually results from an eye infection, but severe dry eye or other eye disorders can cause it.

Corneal ulcer symptoms

Symptoms of corneal ulcers include:

  • redness of the eye
  • severe pain and soreness of the eye
  • the feeling of having something in your eye
  • tearing
  • pus or other discharge
  • blurred vision
  • sensitivity to light
  • swelling of the eyelids
  • a white spot on your cornea that you may or may not be able to see when looking in the mirror

See your ophthalmologist immediately if you think you have a corneal ulcer or have any eye symptoms that concern you. Corneal ulcers can badly and permanently damage your vision and even cause blindness if they are not treated.