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(or vernal catarrh), a chronic disease of the conjunctiva that becomes exacerbated in the spring and summer. It occurs mainly in boys and young men. The cause of vernal conjunctivitis is unknown. The disease is linked to endocrine disturbances or exposure to ultraviolet radiation; it is regarded by some as an allergy. It affects the conjunctiva of the upper lid and sometimes the corneal margins, which become covered with dense, flat papillary growths. The patient complains of photophobia and pruritus of the eyes. The outcome of vernal conjunctivitis is favorable. Treatment consists of antiallergic and hormonal preparations and symptomatic therapy.