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Allergic conjunctivitis: a comprehensive review of the literature

Mario La Rosa1*, Elena Lionetti1, Michele Reibaldi2, Andrea Russo2, Antonio Longo2, Salvatore Leonardi1, Stefania Tomarchio1, Teresio Avitabile2 and Alfredo Reibaldi2

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Pediatrics, University of Catania, Via S. Sofia 78, Catania, 95123, Italy

2 Department of Ophthalmology, University of Catania, Via S. Sofia 78, Catania, 95123, Italy

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Italian Journal of Pediatrics 2013, 39:18  doi:10.1186/1824-7288-39-18

Published: 14 March 2013


Ocular allergy represents one of the most common conditions encountered by allergists and ophthalmologists. Allergic conjunctivitis is often underdiagnosed and consequently undertreated. Basic and clinical research has provided a better understanding of the cells, mediators, and immunologic events, which occur in ocular allergy. New pharmacological agents have improved the efficacy and safety of ocular allergy treatment. An understanding of the immunologic mechanisms, clinical features, differential diagnosis, and treatment of ocular allergy may be useful to all specialists who deal with these patients. The purpose of this review is to systematically review literature underlining all the forms classified as ocular allergy: seasonal allergic conjunctivitis, perennial allergic conjunctivitis, vernal keratoconjunctivitis, atopic keratocongiuntivitis, contact allergy, and giant papillary conjunctivitis.

Allergy; Conjunctivitis; Diagnosis; Symptoms; Treatment