Posted on 26th July 2012
Frank Dougan lost his left eye as a child to a nasty injury and so has been wearing a prosthetic eye ever since – often called a ‘glass eye’ although that is neither correct (as they are made of plastic) nor politically correct. Apparently some aspect of the prosthetic eye irritated his eye lids and led to blepharitis that could not be cured by any recognised treatment for over eight years.
On holiday, he chanced upon some advice to try honey which is traditionally known for its antibacterial properties (true by the way) which he smeared on and the problems all went away. He now uses the honey regularly and he says he’s cured.
Far be it from me to rain on Frank’s parade but there seems to be a lot of confusion in this story – the bottom line is that if it works then great, but my sense is that the antibacterial properties of honey are probably nothing but a red herring. The most likely explanation for all this is that the prosthesis wasn’t fitting all that well, irritated the eyelids and the lovely thick honey acted like engine grease between the two and prevents the discomfort.
If you’re really keen, read our article on blepharitis which gives some background info about the condition but there is often confusion about blepharitis. It simply means ‘inflammation of the eyelids’ which people often take to mean ‘infection’. Now an infection of the eyelids will certainly cause inflammation but the opposite is not necessarily the case. I reckon Mr Dougan had inflamed but not infected, eyelids. But regardless, I wouldn’t have recommend honey. There is a medical lubricant called LacriLube which is more commonly used for this kind of heavy duty greasing.
And onto prosthetic eyes…
We do a quite a lot of prosthetic eyes and they are very interesting and satisfying when they work well. Here’s a wee taster of a few I made earlier.