• Allergic conjunctivitis: symptoms, treatment, photos, causes

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    Allergic conjunctivitis is a conjunctival reaction that has an inflammatory character, manifested under the influence of an allergen( under the condition of an acute susceptibility of the organism), characterized by redness and swelling of the mucous membrane of the eyelids.

    The disease can be called an important clinical problem, as it is quite common.

    Causes of

    The trigger of allergic conjunctivitis is the contact of a certain allergen with conjunctiva. This causes degranulation of mast cells with the subsequent development of an allergic inflammatory reaction.

    Symptoms of conjunctivitis arise from the release of histamine, which is the main participant in the immune response.

    Among the factors that have a pathology, distinguish:

    • contact with dust;
    • pets( cats);
    • with dry food for fish;
    • wearing of lenses;
    • is a chronic microbial infection;
    • flowering plants( see allergic to flowering);
    • use of medicines;
    • heredity;
    • influence of chemical agents;
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    • of substandard cosmetics;
    • industrial hazards;
    • application of eye prostheses;
    • presence of sutures after operations on the eyes( cataract);
    • food products.


    Based on the research, a classification of allergic conjunctivitis was created, within which clinical forms are presented:

    1. 1) Medicinal. It appears as a result of long-term therapy and can develop gradually, and also acutely during a short period of time after the initial administration of any drug. This is especially common among allergic eye diseases.
    2. 2) Pollinous seasonal. The development of the disease is associated with the season of flowering plants. Every year the symptoms are repeated, but weaken with age.
    3. 3) Chronic all-the-year-round. Characterized by scant symptoms and chronic course with periodically appearing unpleasant sensations.
    4. 4) Spring keratoconjunctivitis. Has a steady, chronic course. It occurs most often in male children 5-12 years. Symptoms begin to increase in the spring and subscribe to autumn.
    5. 5) Large capillary. It develops due to prolonged contact with a foreign particle regardless of the patient's age and is characterized by the disappearance of symptoms after withdrawal of the stimulus. Allergic diseases in the anamnesis may not be.
    6. 6) Atopic. Multifactorial disease, which in many cases occurs during systemic immunological reactions and occurs against the background of diseases such as asthma, urticaria, atopic dermatitis.

    Symptoms of allergic conjunctivitis

    The first clinical symptoms of allergic conjunctivitis are determined by the influence of various environmental allergens and can vary in severity from mild to severe.

    1. 1) Colonous conjunctivitis , which begins acutely, is manifested by persistent itching and burning of the eyelids, redness and swelling of the conjunctiva, fear of light and tearing. In the chronic course of the disease, the itching appears periodically, the symptoms are mild. The process can include the cornea and the choroid of the eye, which is fraught with reduced visual acuity.
    2. 2) For chronic all-the-year-round conjunctivitis is characterized by mild burning of the eyes and itchy eyelids, mild erythema and edema. In the mornings, there may be a small detachable. Women are more often ill. It is often combined with nasal symptoms.
    3. 3) Drug conjunctivitis .By the speed of progression can be acute, subacute and protracted. If the symptoms developed within sixty minutes after the administration of the drug - this is an acute reaction. It is expressed by hyperemia of the conjunctiva, edema of the eyelids and lacrimation, and in some cases there are hemorrhages. The protracted reaction develops over several days and for her, the appearance of follicles is characteristic, there is itching and reddening of the mucosa, there are scant excretions.
    4. 4) Spring keratoconjunctivitis .It is characterized by a strong gradually increasing itch of the eyelids and sensation of the alien body. On the inflamed, reddened conjunctiva, there are large papillae that resemble a "cobblestone pavement".These structures are covered with a layer of thick and viscous mucous discharge. A fear of light is very pronounced. In this pathology, the cornea is often affected, on which ulcers, erosion, epitheliopathy can occur.
    5. 5) Large capillary conjunctivitis. Symptoms are dominated by the presence of a foreign body under the upper eyelid. Conjunctiva is red, covered with small and large flattened papillae, reaching up to 1 mm in diameter. There is a mucous transparent discharge from the eyes, as well as itching.
    6. 6) Atopic conjunctivitis correlates with atopic dermatitis. It is expressed by bilateral inflammation of the conjunctiva. Characteristic features include itchy eyelids and periorbital skin. Possible swelling of the lower conjunctiva. The edges of the eyelids and the skin near them can be covered with dry scales. Often there is a tear film and dysfunction of meibomian glands. There is a tendency to a secondary infection, which threatens the development of fungal keratitis, staphylococcal blepharitis, bacterial corneal ulcer.
    It can be concluded that redness, lacrimation, itching are common signs for all clinical forms of the described pathology.

    Also read the symptoms of viral conjunctivitis.

    Treatment of allergic conjunctivitis

    First of all, in the treatment of allergic conjunctivitis it is recommended to find and eliminate the cause, that is, to break contact with the allergen. This is the most non-dangerous and effective method of therapeutic intervention with progressive pathology.

    In addition to it, there are two more fundamental principles of treatment. These include drug symptomatic therapy and immunotherapy.

    For symptomatic treatment, local preparations are prescribed in the form of eye drops from conjunctivitis. In connection with severe forms of the disease, administration of antihistamines is indicated. When choosing a particular medicine should be guided by the clinical form of the disease.

    The main medicines of local therapy include:

    1. 1) Preparations that slow the degranulation of mast cells( lodoxamid, cromoglycate);
    2. 2) Antihistamines( spersallerg, allergothal).
    As additional medicines act:

    • corticosteroids( maxiks, dexamethasone, hydrocortisone);
    • non-steroidal anti-inflammatory( diclofenac-long);
    • complex antibacterial drugs( garazone, dexagentamycin).
    To treat eye and nasal symptoms, oral antihistamines are also prescribed, which include cetirizine, claritin, loratadine. With the possible development of dry eye syndrome( cessation of the development of tears), it is shown the use of water-borne remedies, to which are enrolled visa, oxyal, vidisik.

    To form immunological tolerance and provide a desensitizing effect in medical institutions, specific immunotherapy is conducted, the task of which is to teach the body not to respond to an allergen by violent reaction.

    Allergic conjunctivitis is diagnosed in joint consultations between an ophthalmologist and an allergologist-immunologist, where anamnesis is collected and a decision is made about further examination of the patient. During the conversation, the expert collects information about heredity, the existence of allergic reactions, except for eye symptoms and characteristic features of the disease.

    In addition, skin allergic tests are also performed, which are sufficiently reliable and available. In the acute period of the disease, laboratory methods of allergodiagnostics are used.

    Read also, treatment of conjunctivitis in adults.


    Preventive actions consist in the exclusion of contact with the hair of domestic pets, dust, with household chemicals and cosmetics. Specific prevention, which would prevent the development of allergic conjunctivitis has not yet been developed.

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