Conjunctivitis & Urgent Eye Problems


Conjunctivitis is a common condition.

There are 3 causes

  1. Viral
  2. Bacterial
  3. Allergic

Historically, we treated conjunctivitis with antibiotic drops. However the evidence for these are very poor – if a bout of conjunctivitis lasts 5 days, then using antibiotics may shorten the illness by 6 hours!

It is for this reason that we advise simply cleaning frequently with cooled, boiled water.

Please do seek our help if:

  • The conjunctivitis is affecting a baby younger than 28 days old
  • You have had conjunctivitis for more than 2 weeks.

Worried about an urgent eye problem?

Please note, as a patient registered with a Cheshire Practice, all urgent eye problems are now received, assessed and managed by the opticians across Cheshire.

Opticians in Cheshire (and in Stockport for Stockport residents) are able to refer you directly to the hospital eye clinic if needed, after they have discussed your symptoms with you, and possibly assessed you face to face. This pathway (called CUES) is available to all opticians and represents the safest and quickest way of getting support for a new eye problem.

The service is specifically aimed at “urgent” or sudden, new symptoms such as

  • a red or painful eye,
  • a potential foreign body,
  • sudden change in vision,
  • flashes and floaters (new onset

Please do contact your optician and indicate that you wish to be assessed on the CUES pathway for this urgent problem.

Please only respond back to us if the optician is unable to help, or if you have been advised by them to re-contact your GP –  many thanks.