Allergic conjunctivitis

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  • Conjunctivitis due to exposure to an allergen
  • Chronic allergic conjunctivitis is also called vernal conjunctivitis

Clinical Features

  • Itching
  • Watery discharge
  • Injected and edematous conjunctiva
  • Papillae on inferior conjunctival fornix
  • Red, swollen eyelids

Differential Diagnosis

Conjunctivitis Types


Clinical diagnosis of conjunctivitis

Bacterial Viral Allergic
Bilateral 50% 25% Mostly
Discharge Mucopurulent Clear, Watery Cobblestoning, none
Redness Yes Yes Yes
Pruritis Rarely Rarely Yes
Additional Treatment: Antibiotics Treatment: Hygiene Seasonal


  • Mild: avoid triggers, cool compresses for 15 minutes QID
  • Moderate: Histamine-blocking drops (e.g. olopatadine, pemirolast, or ketotifen)
  • Severe: refer to ophthalmology for possible steroid therapy


  • Discharge with ophthalmology follow-up

See Also