Pinkeye and Fever


Pink eye, or conjunctivitis, is a condition where the conjunctiva (the membrane that covers the whites of the eyes) becomes inflamed and turns red. Pink eye, accompanied with a fever, is a condition that is more common in children, but also occurs in adults. When a fever accompanies pink eye, this could be a sign of an infection.


Pink eye is a condition that is usually the result of a bacterial or viral infection, including colds, ear infections and sinus infections, according to Kids Health. However, this condition can also be caused by an allergic reaction to elements like ragweed pollen, grass, dust and animal dander. In addition, chemical irritants in the environment, such as cleaners and smoke, can cause the eyes to become inflamed. A fever that accompanies pink eye, according to Web MD, is usually the result of viral conjunctivitis.


When a person has pink eye and a fever, he will have a body temperature of over 99.9 degrees F. In addition, the individual’s whites of the eyes will appear red, tear and feel itchy. The eyelids will also appear swollen and the individual may complain about the sensation of having sand in his eye or sensitivity to light. In the case of a bacterial infection, a patient will have a significant amount of thick yellow or green discharge from the eye, according to Web MD. This discharge can cause a person’s eyelids to be stuck together when he wakes in the morning. When the infection is viral, the eye may only have clear drainage or tears.

Reasons to See a Doctor

Individuals should seek immediate medical care, according to Web MD, if they have a fever that accompanies a pink eye and chills, facial pain, extreme sensitivity to light, yellow or green eye discharge, or vision abnormalities. Patients should seek the care of their ophthalmologist or their primary care doctor.


Treatment for pink eye and a fever includes taking a fever-reducing over-the-counter drug, such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen, and antibiotic medication. The antibiotic may come in the form of eye drops or an ointment. In severe cases, patient will receive antibiotics intravenously. A doctor may also prescribe anti-inflammatory drugs or decongestants for the eye.

While an individual has pink eye and a fever, he should always use a tissue to wipe his eyes, use separate towels than the rest of the household and use a clean pillowcase every day. Additionally, the patient should place a warm compress over his eyes to help relieve the swelling and irritation caused by the pink eye. People with pinkeye should not wear makeup, particularly eye makeup, and avoid using contact lenses until the pink eye infection is gone.


When an individual has pink eye and a fever caused by a virus or bacteria, their condition is highly contagious. People can prevent pink eye with proper hand-washing techniques, not touching the eyes with unclean hands and abstaining from sharing makeup, eye drops and contact lenses.

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