Quick Question Regarding Pink Eye

Updated on March 16, 2013
M.J. asks from McLoud, OK
12 answers

DS9 came home with pink eye Wednesday after school. Started drops Wednesday eve and kept him home from school Thursday. I figured I would send him today (Friday) as he would have been on the drops for 24 hours but last night the other eye was red (had been treating both eyes) and now I checked on him asleep and his eyes are crusted shut with yellow goo in the corners. I am guessing that this is a viral pink eye as it's not responding to the meds.

My question is - do I keep him home from school again today? How long is viral pink eye contagious?

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So What Happened?

Thanks all - I did keep him home. He has a warm compress right now to help open them. The drops are an RX Polymyxin and Trimethoprin drops.

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answers from Tulsa on

My son just had this. It was viral and didn't respond to the drops. The doctor said keep him home until the drainage stopped and then he was ok to go back, even if the eyes still looked pink/red.

1 mom found this helpful

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answers from St. Louis on

keep him home until those eyes are clear...or the school nurse/teacher will send him home. :)

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Cumberland on

keep him home and as often as possible, have him use warm water compresses-as hot as tolerable-use a clean wash cloth each time.

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answers from Boston on

Yes, you need to keep him home, unfortunately. It's contagious as long as it's producing all the crud. He may be cross-contaminating the eyes by rubbing. What are the drops? I assume this is a prescription and not something you bought over the counter? Sometimes the antibiotic ointment is more effective, especially at night - it blurs the vision so it's no good during the day, but it's pretty sticky and will stay in during sleep. Be careful with whatever product you use that you don't let the bottle or tube touch the eye - that gets the bacteria on the container and then you just transfer it back and forth from one eye to the other and even your hands. If you use warm compresses to soften the goop on his eyes, put that cloth in the wash immediately and do not re-use it. Good luck.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from St. Louis on

Our pediatrician said keep them home until there is no longer crust.

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answers from Minneapolis on

I work with kindergarten era and had pink eye that did not respond to the drops they initially prescribed. They switched drops and it finally cleared up.


answers from Hartford on

For the future whenever you're given eye drops for conjunctivitis (pink eye/eye infections) make sure that you ALWAYS dose both eyes even if the other eye isn't showing signs of being infected. That's just common Rx.

And make sure that the bottle tip doesn't touch his eyes or face. If it does you're going to need a new bottle.



answers from Savannah on

I have had a doctor keep me out of work for a week due to pink eye! That was when I was working with children.



answers from Oklahoma City on

If it's not pink eye the drops won't help. If it's sinus infection that has no where else to go that has found it's exit through his eyes an oral antibiotic will take care of it.

So, if the eye meds stop it and heal it in the next few days it was likely pink eye, if they are still messy then get an oral antibiotic for a sinus or ear infection and see if that does the trick.


answers from Tampa on

Personally I would keep him home. However 24 hrs after drops are started or I think 3 doses, it's not contagious. My son gets pink eye without fail every year...


answers from Columbia on

The thing about viral conjunctivitis is that it cannot be cured with drops. It's highly contagious and has to run its course.

I recommend using hot compresses (hot, damp washcloths, washed out with antibacterial soap after every use) several time a day. Lots of handwashing to reduce the likelihood of spreading it. No touching the face. Change pillowcases every morning. Clean towel for each bath.

It will clear up on its own.



answers from Duluth on

I know this flies in the face of what everyone else is saying, and perhaps even against good sense and kindness to others, but here we go. We have SEVEN rounds of pinkeye in our house this January. Every one of them went away after one round of antibiotic drops, and then I would continue them for another 24 hours, as the drops and my doc recommended. Sometimes longer, if it was at all iffy whether they'd disappeared. Finally, after my son's third round of pinkeye, I called the school. I was sick of staying home with him because he felt fine. I asked her what she'd recommend, whether it was viral or bacterial, and how long I had to keep him out. She said that because pinkeye is contagious before it even shows up, she doesn't do too much with the kids who have viral at all, unless they're all goopy and yucky looking. Granted, she is the nurse at a 5-6-7-8 school, not a young grade school, but I thought her response was interesting. If you are keeping him home til his eyes clear all the way, it could be more than your school requires. I'm not at all a huge fan of sending sick kids to school, but your school might let him back whrn the gunkiness is gone.

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