Eye and Ear Injuries

The eye can be easily damaged. It is extremely important that the correct treatment is applied to the eye. An eye injury that has had the incorrect treatment can result in irreversible eye damage.

Eye injuries can be sustained in a multitude of ways. Examples include injuries from blunt objects, penetrating objects, foreign bodies, welder’s flash, chemical or heat burns and ultraviolet radiation (sun).


Recognition of Eye Injuries

  • Pain to the eye
  • Object penetrating the eye.
  • Redness of the eye
  • Watering eyes/tears
  • Inability to open the eye due to light or pain.
  • Swelling around the eye
  • Bleeding into/from the eye
  • Foreign substances in the eye such as sand, grit etc

Management of Eye Injuries

  • D.R.S.A.B.C.D. and Call 000 for an ambulance.
  • Reassure the casualty and sit/lay the casualty down away from bright lights or sunlight.
  • Gently rinse the eye if dirt, liquid, or smoke is causing the irritation. Irrigate under the eyelids if possible.
  • Gently apply a sterile pad the affected eye. If there is an object penetrating the eye, place padding around the object to keep the eye and object from moving, consider padding the unaffected eye to avoid movement of the injured eye which could cause further damage.
  • DO NOT remove any penetrating objects or place any pressure on the casualty’s eyes, or to the impaled object.

Ear Injuries

Bleeding from the ear can mean that either the ear drum has ruptured, or the casualty has sustained a fractured skull.

In both cases the fluid should be allowed to drain with the injured ear facing downwards to prevent a build-up of pressure within the skull.


  • D.R.S.A.B.C.D and Call 000.
  • Position the casualty comfortably, either sitting up or laying down with the head tilted towards the injured side so the blood can drain freely.
  • Lightly cover the affected side with a clean/sterile dressing.  DO NOT plug the ear as this will allow the pressure to build up within the skull.
  • If a skull fracture is suspected, or there is a major head injury, a spinal injury could also be possible.  Treat accordingly
  • Treat for shock.