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January 1970

Conjunctival Membranes in Epidemic Keratoconjunctivitis

Author Affiliations

From the Cornea Service, Wills Eye Hospital and Research Institute, Philadelphia. Dr. Green is now at the Ophthalmic Pathology Laboratory, Wilmer Institute, Johns Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore.

Arch Ophthalmol. 1970;83(1):100-102. doi:10.1001/archopht.1970.00990030102019

During an epidemic outbreak of adenovirus type 8 keratoconjunctivitis in the Philadelphia area, approximately 150 patients were examined and treated.1 Unlike previous epidemics of this disease where pseudomembranous and membranous conjunctivitis was common,2 in the recent epidemic only one patient had such conjunctival changes.

This patient was suspected of having epidemic keratoconjunctivitis because of the appearance of membranes on her conjunctiva during a period when the disease was present in the community.

When first examined, there was marked photophobia and lacrimation from both eyes. There were pale pink confluent membranes on the conjunctival surface of all four lids (Fig 1 and 2); however, the bulbar conjunctiva was minimally injected without signs of membrane formation. Smears of the conjunctiva revealed no organisms, and a polymorphonuclear cellular reaction was noted. The corneas of each eye were slightly irregular with a fine diffusion of the slit lamp reflex. This was due to myriads

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