Allergic Conjunctivitis

Allergic conjunctivitis demonstrating bulbar and tarsal conjunctival papillary reaction. 

  • One of the most common ocular immunologic disorders seen in ophthalmologic practice.
  • Usually due to immediate hypersensitivity reaction to a variety of airborne allergens such as; pollens from grass, weeds and ragweed.

Clinical features:

  • Acute, recurrent, transient, and self-limiting condition.
  • May also present as perennial or chronic condition.
  • Commonly have other allergic histories such as eczema, asthma or seasonal rhinitis.
  • Symptoms:
    • Acute onset of itching
    • Burning sensation
    • Tearing
  • Signs:
    • Red eye
    • Chemosis (conjunctival edema)
    • Lid swelling
    • Conjunctival papillary reaction
    • Watery and/or mucoid discharge

Management:

  • Avoid allergens, if known.
  • Topical antihistamines usually helpful.
  • Topical vasoconstrictor may be used.
  • Topical NSAIDs usually helpful to relieve the itching.
  • Topical mast cell degranulation inhibitor.
  • Topical steroids may be considered when other agents have failed and in severe cases.
  • Systemic antihistamines.