Demodex Blepharitis is Blepharitis caused by a secondary Demodex mite infestation. Demodex mites are microscopic 8 legged arachnid parasites that live in our hair follicles and sebaceous glands. There are 65 different species of Demodex however, only two are found on humans (Demodex brevis and Demodex folliculorum). They can not be contracted from any other species. A typical Demodex life cycle is complete within 18-24 days. An adult female can lay 20-24 eggs in a hair follicle, these eggs are then incubated by the cells surrounding them within the follicle. Females stay within the hair follicle while males will leave the follicle in search of a mate. The mites are capable of walking approximately 10 mm/h and are most active at night.
Symptoms of Demodex Blepharitis are:
- Eyelid and eyebrow itching (especially in the morning)
- Absence or loss of eyelashes
- Eye redness
- Burning and/or foreign body sensation that feels as if it is originating from beneath the eyelids
Diagnosis and Treatment
Dr. Calotti offers specialized diagnostics that will help him diagnose demodex on your eyelashes. He also offers patient specific treatment plans for at home care and also more comprehensive treatment options that are done in office.