CONJUNCTIVITIS


Conjunctiva is a superficial covering of eyeball and is continuously exposed to dust and infection in the air. These irritants may cause inflammation of the conjunctiva known as conjunctivitis. It is accompanied by redness of the eye and increased secretion. The nature of secretion varies with the causative agents. In severe affections the conjunctiva is swollen like a bag of fluid known as chaemosis.

Conjunctivitis is mainly of two types:

Infective
Non infective

Infective Conjunctivitis

It is mainly of bacterial and Viral origin. Other common infective conjunctivitis is trachoma, which is endemic in some areas. Rarely it can be caused by Gonococcus. This type of conjunctivitis is mainly contagious, being transmitted by contact.

Bacterial Conjunctivitis
In these cases there is plenty of mucous secretion seen as yellow green pus coming from the eyes with matting of eyelashes. 

Viral conjunctivitis

In these cases the discharge is more watery in nature. It is most common form of epidemic conjunctivitis.
The spread is by contaminated fingers, towels, swimming pool etc.

Treatment

Frequent washing of the eyes helps by washing out infective materials and give soothing effect.

Use of appropriate drugs to control infections.

Antibiotics are indicated for bacterial conjunctivitis .

There is no specific antiviral agent available but most of viral infections are self-limiting in nature. Mostly viral infections are contagious for a week. Patients should be advised to avoid contact with other persons for a week.

Dark glasses: Conjunctivitis may cause photosensitivity. Use of dark glass gives soothing effect. It also helps in    preventing spread of infection by avoiding frequent contact with the eyes.

 

Steroids: Should not be used in infective conjunctivitis as it may flare up the infection.

Allergic Conjunctivitis

This type of conjunctivitis is mostly non-contagious.
Most common types are:

Chronic conjunctivitis: It is mostly due to allergy by pollens, dust, spores, dandruff, food products etc.Other factors are blepharitis (inflammation of lid margin), dry eye, prolonged use of eye drops and contact lenses.

Spring Catarrh ( Vernal conjunctivitis ): This is recurrent bilateral conjunctivitis occurring mainly with onset of    summer and subsides in winters or cooler season.

Symptoms

Burning, Itching, watering and photosensitivity. In severe cases eye may get muddy and have some raised granular structure known as follicles.

Treament

No permanent cure is known. It does not cause any damage to eyesight. Treatment is only symptomatic.

Antiallergic drops and tablets. 

Steroid drops: Has maximum efficacy but regular use can lead to cataract and glaucoma. So must be used under  doctors advise and for short period only.

Dark glasses and frequent eye wash gives soothing effect and reduce the allergens.

 



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