Difference Between Pink Eye and Stye

Pink eye and stye are two different eye diseases. Both of them affect the conjunctiva and cause almost similar symptoms. The causes of the disease are different and need immediate treatment.

Pink Eye vs Stye

The main difference between pink eye and stye is their appearance. The pink eye cause pustule in the outer layer of the eye, whereas in stye, no pimples are evolved.

\The reason for pink eye is in different forms like bacteria, viruses, and allergens. The cause of stye is only bacteria.

Pink eye is considered contagious, whereas stye is not a contagious one.

Pink Eye vs Stye

Pink eye is also called conjunctivitis. It is nothing but an inflammation of the conjunctiva of the eye. The conjunctiva is nothing but the white part which surrounds the eyelid.

The blood vessels in the conjunctiva become inflamed and give a reddish appearance, which is more visible. The inflamed or infected blood vessels are the reason for conjunctivitis or pink eye.

Bacteria or viruses are the major cause of pink eye. It may also be due to allergic reactions in the human body.

A stye is nothing but an acne-like structure with a discharge when it broke down. The stye can be classified into external stye and internal stye.

The external stye is the acne present in the outer part of the eyelid and the internal stye is the acne present in the inner side of the eyelid.

Both of them are painful and need medications or treatment. Infections are the primary reason for both types of the stye.

The single eye effect is common, but it also affects both the eyes and causes bumps.

Comparison Table Between Pink Eye and Stye

Parameters of coparisonPink EyeStye
AppearancePink eye look like redness of the skinStye look like a bump on the outer layer
Development of dead cellsIn the pink eye, there is no development of dead cellsIn stye, there is a formation of dead cells
ContagiousPink eye is contagiousStye is not contagious
Pus formationPink eye has no formation of pusStye has a formation of pus
DischargePink eye has yellow dischargeStye has no discharge

What is Pink Eye?

Pink eye is the most common disease in people who have allergic. In severe conditions, it rarely affects the vision and causes blindness.

Irritation is the primary symptom of pink eye. Pink eye is considered contagious. Immediate treatment will help to stop the spread of pink eye.

It can be controlled by limiting its spreading speed. Redness, itchiness, gritty feeling, and discharges in both eyes are the early symptoms of pink eye. Sometimes tearing also happens.

The severe condition of pink eye may cause eye pain, blurred vision, and sticking of something. These symptoms need immediate care and treatment.

If you wear glasses or contact lens, then your eyesight must be checked. New pair of the lens are recommended. It might cause severe infection to the retina and infect the blood vessels.

Adenovirus and herpes simplex virus is a common type of virus that causes pink eye in humans. The coronavirus may also affect your conjunctiva and cause pink eye.

Pink eye is also caused by a tainted lens. The tainted lens may have bacteria and cause bacterial conjunctivitis.

The three types of conjunctivitis are viral conjunctivitis, bacterial conjunctivitis, and allergic conjunctivitis. All of them are contagious and need immediate treatment.

If pink eye is diagnosed in one eye and you avoid treatment, then another eye may also be affected. The risk factor of pink eye is inflammation in the cornea, which affects the vision.

What is Stye?

The stye is also called a sty. The stye is nothing but a red bump on the outer layer of the eye. The stye is very painful and looks like a tiny pimple. It is due to the blockage of the oil-producing gland.

The eye follicles get infected and inflamed. Hordeolum is the medical term of stye. The stye is painfull when compared to pink eye.

The blockage of glands or pores of the skin around the eye is called stye. It may be due to dust or pollution and also due to irregular washing of the face.

A stye is a common thing that affects all genders and ages of people. But compared to children, adults have more common because of their oil-secreting glands.

Adult oil glands are more prone to blockage than children. If you have diabetes, dandruff, and rosacea, then stye is a common thing.

High levels of blood cholesterol may also cause stye in adults. It takes two weeks to cure completely. It gets dissolved by itself and consults the doctor if it is more painful.

Avoid contact with that bump and eyelid.

A stye is not contagious like pink eye. If you keep contact with your hands then it leads to bacterial infection. If the bump is in large size, then it affected the vision.

There are two types of stye namely external stye and internal stye. Both of them are painful and cause discomfort to the vision.

Main Differences Between Pink Eye and Stye

  1. The vision can be affected by pink eye, whereas no effect in vision in a stye.
  2. The formation of cellulitis is high in pink eye and low in a stye.
  3. The pink eye does not need drainage, whereas stye needs drainage.
  4. The pink eye is classified into viral and bacterial, whereas stye is classified into external and internal.
  5. Pink eye is due to prolonged exposure to lights, whereas stye is due to dust and microorganisms.
Difference Between Pink Eye and Stye


Pink eye and stye are two different forms of eye disorders. The pink eye is due to excessive exposure to sunlight and visual lights. The stye is due to dust and other microorganisms.

Both of them need medical treatment and medications. In severe conditions, there is a chance to become blind. Both pink eye and stye have similar symptoms like redness, itching, and dryness.

You can not prevent pink eye infection, whereas you have a chance to prevent stye by cleaning your eyes regularly. Both of them need at least seven days to heal.

Pink eye can be cured in a couple of days with an antibiotic.


  1. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0008418210800134
  2. https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diseases/8614-pink-eye-conjunctivitis
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