Discussions By Condition: I cannot get a diagnosis.

Black eyes with No Cause

Posted In: I cannot get a diagnosis. 7 Replies
  • Posted By: concerned1forparent
  • August 11, 2009
  • 11:44 PM

For the past several months my mother has been getting black eyes (dark purple, burgandy, black in color) above her eyes; they may be small or like the one she awoke with yesterday morning from the inner corner of her eye to the outer corner in length; and from her eye lashes to her eye brows in height. She has been to her medical doctor who could not explain the reason, so he sent her to her eye doctor. All test results have come back fine, but yet no one can tell us what is causing these bruises /"black eyes". At one point my mother thought is was from the blood vessels breaking when she coughed or sneezed, but again, she was sound asleep and woke up with this nasty black eye (only above her eye, not below) and had not been coughing or sneezing. There is no pain, no headaches, nothing.

We are all dumbfounded on this subject (the same with her doctor).

Any suggestions???

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7 Replies:

  • For the past several months my mother has been getting black eyes (dark purple, burgandy, black in color) above her eyes; they may be small or like the one she awoke with yesterday morning from the inner corner of her eye to the outer corner in length; and from her eye lashes to her eye brows in height. She has been to her medical doctor who could not explain the reason, so he sent her to her eye doctor. All test results have come back fine, but yet no one can tell us what is causing these bruises /"black eyes". At one point my mother thought is was from the blood vessels breaking when she coughed or sneezed, but again, she was sound asleep and woke up with this nasty black eye (only above her eye, not below) and had not been coughing or sneezing. There is no pain, no headaches, nothing. We are all dumbfounded on this subject (the same with her doctor). Any suggestions???Just a suggestion...but how old is she. Elderly people tend to bruised very, very easily. Sometimes with almost no pressure. I took care of my Grandparents when my Grandfather was dying of cancer and would help my Grandma get out of the car by grabbing he arm to put it around my waist and help her stand up..... I did this a couple times with barely any force at all and noticed bruises in the shape of my hands where I grabbed her arm those times. It really didn't take much at all, needless to say I had to stop helping her out of the car like that. But it was absolutely shocking how little it took to do that much damage. As to how she ends up with black eyes from sleeping....I don't know. Could be how she sleeps, if she puts any pressure on her eye(s) from how she lays down, or as little as the Rapid Eye Movement everyone gets when they are sleeping.....is her bruising is mainly in the eyelid. Just a guess....but if she is elderly.....it could be a possibility especially if she bruises easily elsewhere.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • August 12, 2009
    • 08:38 AM
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  • Has she seen an Ear, Nose and Throat Specialist ? Perhaps it could be sinus related ?Samanthahttp://www.undiagnosedillness.org
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • August 12, 2009
    • 09:33 PM
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  • Yes, she does have a cell phone, but does not use it very often. Yes, we have a cordless telephone in the house. No, I do not believe she has been to an ENT (Ears, Nose & Throat) Specialist, but I would have to ask her. We talked about it last night, a little, and she believes that it is just the veins around her eyes that are breaking (like having varicose veins of the legs - they break for no reason). Maybe that is the answer, along with age, not that she's all that old. We just believe that for this to come out of the blue and for no apparent reason, just isn't "nothing".
    concerned1forparent 1 Replies
    • August 12, 2009
    • 09:52 PM
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  • This is known as spontaneous periorbital ecchymosis, more commonly called Racoon Eyes, and occurs in the elderly due to increased pressure in the capillary beds of the peri-orbital tissues. The most common cause is excessive straining while attempting a bowel movement in the presence of constipation or difficulty passing stool, or in some rare instances, difficulty in passing urine. Intense coughing or sneezing more often results in a subconjunctival hemorrhage (bleeding in the sclera or white portion of the eye), than spontaneous ecchymosis. There are other causes, such as giant cell arteritis, that can cause the condition to appear and should be ruled out if other symptoms are present such as severe temporal headaches and changes in vision. Amyloidosis can also cause the condition to occur, but since she does not appear to demonstrate symptoms consistent with such disorders, then it's highly unlikely to be the case. Best regards, J Cottle, MD
    JCottleMD 580 Replies
    • August 13, 2009
    • 00:45 AM
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  • I'm trying to figure out why in the past few months I end up with spontaneous black eyes. Mine form below the eye. The day before they show up I get an itchy and sore area right below the eye. The next day it looks like someone smacked me in the eye. It's happened on both eyes---once it happened on both of them together. It's happened about 12 times now. My doctor said she's never heard of it. I googled it and found one other person that seemed to be having the same issue but it looks like she posted in 2004, so it's not going to be easy to track that down and see what she found out, if anything. It's really weird. I'm not having unusual bruising elsewhere---just the usual banged shins and arms. But this eye thing is REALLY weird.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • November 20, 2010
    • 02:43 PM
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  • I'm having the same problem too, have you found out any info yet?
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • January 20, 2011
    • 11:41 PM
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  • I just wanted to let you know I am having the same experience. What feels like the edge of my eye socket under my left eye began itching and burning yesterday. It has been somewhat painful and itchy today, and has developed into a mild black eye. Not necessarily helpful, but I was glad to see that someone else had experienced something similar.I'm thinking it may be a broken capillary below the eye. Sometimes prostaglandins released during tissue injury can cause an itching sensation as well as pain. Just a guess- haven't found much online. I'm trying to figure out why in the past few months I end up with spontaneous black eyes. Mine form below the eye. The day before they show up I get an itchy and sore area right below the eye. The next day it looks like someone smacked me in the eye. It's happened on both eyes---once it happened on both of them together. It's happened about 12 times now. My doctor said she's never heard of it. I googled it and found one other person that seemed to be having the same issue but it looks like she posted in 2004, so it's not going to be easy to track that down and see what she found out, if anything. It's really weird. I'm not having unusual bruising elsewhere---just the usual banged shins and arms. But this eye thing is REALLY weird.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • February 15, 2011
    • 06:57 AM
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