DR P. MARAZZI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DR P. MARAZZI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Black eye. Close-up of extensive bruising around a child's left eye. Any direct blow damages the many small blood vessels around the eye, causing the blood to leak and collect there. As the skin around the eyes is so thin, a black eye appears darker than ordinary bruises. It first appears black or blue and then fades to green and yellow as the red blood pigment haemoglobin breaks down. To reduce the pain and swelling of a bruise a cold compress or cloth applied to the injured area should help. No doubt the traditional remedy of a steak applied to a black eye has the same function.
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