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Related to Ulcerative keratitis: Corneal Ulcers


Inflammation of the cornea.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



inflammation of the cornea of the eye.

Keratitis arises from certain external, predominantly infectious, factors (exogenic keratitis) or from common systemic diseases (endogenic keratitis). Keratitis may also be caused by mechanical, thermal, chemical, or radiation traumas, as well as certain types of vitamin deficiency. Keratitis is manifested by photophobia, epiphora, pain, and redness of the eye, by edema of the cornea and disruption of its transparency (development of an inflammatory infiltrate), and sometimes by loss of sensitivity of the cornea and the appearance of newly formed ingrown blood vessels. The duration and course of keratitis depends on the cause of the inflammation; with infectious keratitis it depends on the type and virulence of the microorganisms and also on the reactivity and condition of the body. Often as a result of keratitis there remain persistent opacities (cataracts), in some cases small and unobtrusive and in others large and intense, which are often the cause of a decrease in vision, especially if they are located in the central, contrapupillary portion of the cornea.

A distinction is made between surface keratites and deep keratitis. The most frequently encountered of the surface exogenic keratites are catarrhal keratitis, which develops from infectious conjunctivitis; herpetic keratitis, the result of viral affection of the eye; keratitis with epidemic adenoviral conjunctivitis; serpiginous corneal ulcer, a serious purulent disease usually caused by a pneumococcal infection and often arising after minor injury to the cornea (the entry of small foreign bodies or scratches); and keratitis with blennorrhea, diphtheria, or trachoma.

Most frequently encountered of the surface endogenic keratites is phlyctenular keratitis as a manifestation of an allergy in children and adolescents with tubercular intoxication; keratitis in this form is usually bilateral and tends to recur. The typical form of deep endogenic keratitis is parenchymatous keratitis with congenital syphilis; it is observed in children and adolescents, is as a rule bilateral, and is characterized by a prolonged course and diffuse infiltration of the cornea, often with ingrown blood vessels; vision, which decreases severely in the beginning, may subsequently improve substantially or even be restored with resorption of infiltrates. Deep keratitis with tuberculosis usually affects one eye and leaves intense opacity of the cornea.

Treatment of keratitis must be directed toward eliminating the cause of the disease; with infectious keratites antibiotics or sulfanilamides are used locally; with cataracts that substantially decrease vision surgical intervention (keratoplasty) is necessary.


Barbel’, I. E. “Bolezni rogovoi obolochki.” In Mnogotomnoe rukovodstvo po glaznym bolezniam, vol. 2, book 1. Moscow, 1960. (Bibliography.)


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Rheumatoid arthritis-associated necrotizing scleritis and peripheral ulcerative keratitis treated successfully with infliximab.
Bacterial isolates and antimicrobial susceptibilities in equine bacterial ulcerative keratitis. Equine Veterinary Journal, v.37, n.
Abbreviations PUK: Peripheral ulcerative keratitis PSC: Primary sclerosing cholangitis PBC: Primary biliary cholangitis ERCP: Endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography IOP: Intraocular pressure OD: Right eye OS: Left eye Th-1: T helper cell type 1 Th-2: T helper cell type 2 T-bet: T-box expressed in T cells.
Thorne, "Scleritis and peripheral ulcerative keratitis," Rheumatic Diseases Clinics of North America, vol.
Contact lens wear is highly influential on the incidence of ulcerative keratitis worldwide, particularly in developed countries.
A case of ulcerative keratitis was reported as early as 1974.
The impact of overnight wear on the risk of contact lens-associated ulcerative keratitis. Arch Ophthalmol 1994; 112 : 186-90.
With these lenses, there is a greater incidence of ulcerative keratitis, a corneal infection that can lead to blindness.
Physicians expected that the lenses' short life and minimal handling would translate into less ulcerative keratitis. But two new studies now find that patients wearing disposable lenses have higher rates of this eye inflammation than people with other kinds of contacts.
The study's investigation demonstrated that the risk of developing ulcerative keratitis (inflammation of the cornea) is four to five times greater for extended-wear contact users than for daily-wear users.
The agency, citing statistics from a study showing that extended-wear lens users were at a far greater risk of contracting ulcerative keratitis than those who sport daily-wear lenses, recommended that manufacturers relabel lenses for continuous use of no more than seven days, down from the 30-day schedule.
In conclusion, cryoglobulins should be measured in patients with HCV infection and signs of peripheral ulcerative keratitis even in the absence of vasculitis.