Skip to content
Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter September 25, 2015

Demodex mites as potential etiological factor in chalazion – a study in Poland

Witold Tarkowski, Marta Owczyńska, Anna Błaszczyk-Tyszka and Daniel Młocicki
From the journal Acta Parasitologica


The aim of the study was to investigate the presence of Demodex in the hair follicles of eyelashes and their potential participation in the aetiology of chalazion in patients in Poland. The study of the correlation between the presence of Demodex spp. and chalazion has never been performed in patients in Europe. There is, therefore, a justified necessity to check whether Demodex mites can be a potential risk factor in the development of chalazion in the European population. The samples were examined by light microscope, using standard parasitological methods. A positive result was assumed in the presence of Demodex spp. Demodex was detected in 91.67% of patients with a chalazion. The presence of Demodex was found in subjects from all examined age groups. The results of statistical analysis unambiguously determined the existence of an interrelationship between the presence of Demodex and chalazion. Our results clearly indicate the existence of a correlation between the occurrence of Demodex spp. and chalazion. Confirmation of the positive correlation between Demodex and chalazion in a European population provides further evidence for the pathogenic role of Demodex in the development of eye diseases.


Akbulatova L.K. 1963. The pathogenic role of Demodex mite and the clinical form of demodicosis in man. (in Russian). Vestnik Dermatologii i Venerologii, 40, 57-61Search in Google Scholar

Akilov O.E., Mumcuoglu K.Y. 2003. Association between human demodicosis and HLA class. Journal of Clinical and Experimental Dermatology, 28, 70-7310.1046/j.1365-2230.2003.01173.xSearch in Google Scholar

Baima B. Sticherling M. 2002. Demodicidosis revisited. Acta Dermato- Venerologica, 82, 3-610.1080/000155502753600795Search in Google Scholar

Bonnar E., Eustace P., Powell F.C. 1993. The Demodex mite population in rosacea. Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, 28, 443-44810.1016/0190-9622(93)70065-2Search in Google Scholar

Bradford C.A. (Ed.) 2004. Basic Ophthalmology. 8th Edition. American Academy of Ophthalmology. USA. pp. 219Search in Google Scholar

Browning D, Proia A. 1986. Ocular rosacea. Survey of Ophthalmology, 31, 145-15810.1016/0039-6257(86)90034-2Search in Google Scholar

Desch C., Nutting W.B. 1972. Demodex folliculorum (Simon) and Demodex brevis (Akbulatova) of man: redescription and reevaluation. Journal of Parasitology, 58, 169-17710.2307/3278267Search in Google Scholar

Desch C., Nutting W.B. 1977: Morphology and functional anatomy of Demodex folliculorum (Simon) of man. Acarologia, 19, 422-462 v. Hippel E. 1932. Demodex folliculorum im Chalazion. Albrecht von Graefes Archiv fur Ophthalmologie, 129, 198-20410.1007/BF01853691Search in Google Scholar

Humiczewska M. 1991. Demodex folliculorum and Demodex brevis (Acardia) as the factors of chronic marginal blepharitis. Wiadomości Parazytologiczne, 37, 127-130Search in Google Scholar

Jarmuda S., O’Reilly N., Zaba R., Jakubowicz O., Szkaradkiewicz A., Kavanagh K. 2012. Potential role of Demodex mites and bacteria in the induction of rosacea. Journal of Medical Microbiology, 61, 1504-1510. DOI: 10.1099/jmm.0.048090-010.1099/jmm.0.048090-0Search in Google Scholar PubMed

Kamoun B., Fourati M., Feki J., Mlik M., Karray F., Trigui A., Ellouze S., Hammami B., Chaabouni M., Ayadi A. 1999. Blepharitis due to Demodex: myth or reality? (In French). Journal francais d’ophthalmologie, 22, 525-527Search in Google Scholar

Kanski J.J., Bowling B. (Eds). 2011. Clinical Ophthalmology: A Systematic Approach. 7th Edition. Elsevier Health Sciences, USA, pp. 92010.1016/B978-0-7020-4093-1.00019-7Search in Google Scholar

Kligman A.M., Christensen M.S. 2011. Demodex folliculorum: requirements for understanding its role in human skin disease. Journal of Investigative Dermatology, 131, 8-10. DOI: 10.1038/jid.2010.33510.1038/jid.2010.335Search in Google Scholar PubMed

Lacey N., Delaney S., Kavanagh K., Powell F.C. 2007. Mite-related bacterial antigens stimulate inflammatory cells in rosacea. British Journal of Dermatology, 157, 474-48110.1111/j.1365-2133.2007.08028.xSearch in Google Scholar PubMed

Lacey N., Kavanagh K., Tseng S.C. 2009. Under the lash: Demodex mites in human diseases. Biochem (Lond), 31, 2-610.1042/BIO03104020Search in Google Scholar

Lacey N., Ni Raghallaigh S., Powell F.C. 2011. Demodex mitescommensals, parasites or mutualistic organisms? Dermatology, 222, 128-130. DOI: 10.1159/00032300910.1159/000323009Search in Google Scholar PubMed

Liang L., Ding X., Tseng S.C. 2014. High prevalence of Demodex brevis infestation in chalazia. American Journal of Ophthalmology, 157, 342-348. DOI: 10.1016/j.ajo.2013.09.03110.1016/j.ajo.2013.09.031Search in Google Scholar PubMed

Pena G.P., Andrade Filho J.S. 2000. Is Demodex really non-pathogenic? Revista do Instituto de Medicina Tropical de Sao Paulo, 42, 171-173 10.1590/S0036-46652000000300012Search in Google Scholar

Raszeja-Kotelba B., Pecold K., Pecold-Stępniewska H., Dadej I. 2004. Ocular rosacea - current etiopathogenetic, clinical and therapeutic data, and a description of three cases. (In Polish). Advances in Dermatology and Allergology, 21, 144-150Search in Google Scholar

Sönmez O.U., Yalcın Z.G., Karakece E., Ciftci I.H., Erdem T. 2013. Associations between Demodex species infestation and various types of cancer. Acta Parasitologica, 58, 551-555, DOI: 10.2478/s11686-013-0178-y 10.2478/s11686-013-0178-ySearch in Google Scholar PubMed

Wolf R., Ophir J., Avigat J., Lengy J., Krakowski A. 1988. The hair follicle mites (Demodex spp.) Could they be vectors of pathogenic microorganisms? Acta Dermato-Venereologica, 68, 535-537Search in Google Scholar

Yam J.C., Tang B.S., Chan T.M., Cheng A.C. 2014. Ocular demodicidosis as a risk factor of adult recurrent chalazion. European Journal of Ophthalmology, 24, 159-63. DOI: 10.5301/ejo. 5000341 Search in Google Scholar

Received: 2015-3-17
Revised: 2015-6-23
Accepted: 2015-6-25
Published Online: 2015-9-25
Published in Print: 2015-12-1

W. Stefański Institute of Parasitology, PAS

Scroll Up Arrow