I N AN exhaustive ophthalmologic review of herpes zoster ophthalmicus, published in the Archives, Edgerton1 wrote:
Cases of zoster without eruption are exceptional, although Lederer in 1900, reported such cases.... A typical zoster without eruption but with neuralgia may occur.... Ahlström, in 1904, described an unusual case in which corneal zoster was the only form of involvement of the fifth nerve in the course of zoster of the lumbar plexus. Von Hoffmann, in 1879, described a similar case, but without the cutaneous eruption.2
Although I have not had recourse to all the articles cited, I have the definite impression that herpes zoster ophthalmicus sine eruptione is not a common disorder.
In three years of ophthalmologic practice since World War II, I have encountered 5 cases of herpes zoster ophthalmicus—3 with eruption and 2 without. Brief reports of the 2 cases without eruption, with notes of comparison, follow.
ROSS JVM. HERPES ZOSTER OPHTHALMICUS SINE ERUPTIONE. Arch Ophthalmol. 1949;42(6):808-812. doi:10.1001/archopht.1949.00900050819009