How to remove metal splinters from the eye

Written by helen jain | 13/05/2017
How to remove metal splinters from the eye
Splinters that get into eyes can cause pain, discomfort and even injury. (eyes image by Mat Hayward from

When a metal splinter gets into an eye it is very dangerous. Removing the splinter immediately is important. Splinters in the eye can cause damage to the cornea or can completely ruin the vision in that eye. In some cases, a metal splinter in the eye can result in the loss of the eye and the need for a prosthetic. Getting the splinter removed is vital to preventing further damage.

Avoid rubbing the eye, as this can result in pushing the splinter deeper. Avoid pushing on the eye, also, as this can push a splinter into the eye and result in puncturing the eye.

Look in the mirror to locate the splinter. Pull the eyelid away from the eye and look with the other eye to locate the splinter. Metal splinters should be easily seen due to the colour.

Go to the doctor for any splinter that has cut, punctured or otherwise caused pain to the eye. If the splinter looks like it can be easily removed, follow the rest of the steps.

Wash hands with soap and hot water.

Rinse the eye with plain water. Depending on the depth and size of the splinter, some will easily come out by flushing it out. Do not rinse the eye if it has been punctured or cut, or there is pain.

Pinch the splinter between a thumb and forefinger if it is stuck in the eyelid and pull it out. If the splinter has gone into the cornea, do not touch it, or it can result in further damage to the eye.

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  • Soap
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