Antibiotics that can be taken by mouth are the standard treatment for tear duct infection. Antibiotics clear up acute infections quickly and can ease symptoms of chronic infections. Most cases of acute tear duct infection clear up quickly with treatment. In some cases, antibiotic ointment or eye drops may be prescribed. Do not attempt to apply an over-the-counter antibiotic ointment to the eye or the area around the eye, since over-the-counter ointments are not made for use in the eye and could have irritating ingredients.
If the infection does not respond to antibiotics, or if infections keep returning, minor surgery may be needed. There are several types of surgical treatments for tear duct infections:
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