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July 2015

Severe Conjunctival Reaction Following Attempted Corneal Tattooing

Author Affiliations
  • 1Cornea Services, Aravind Eye Hospital, Madurai, India
JAMA Ophthalmol. 2015;133(7):854-856. doi:10.1001/jamaophthalmol.2015.0934

Corneal tattooing is considered to be a simple and safe outpatient procedure for unsightly leukomatous opacities. Very rarely, serious untoward complications may occur and may warrant additional medical and surgical management. We report a case of severe chemical injury following corneal tattooing and describe our strategy to treat it.

A man in his late 20s with a unilateral corneal opacity in his long-standing blind left eye of 20 years’ duration approached us seeking an alternate cosmetic improvement to colored contact lenses, which he was using for more than 2 years and to which he had become increasingly intolerant. He gave a history of penetrating trauma to his left eye in childhood that was surgically managed then but had no vision thereafter. Visual acuity was 20/20 OD and no light perception OS. On slitlamp examination, the anterior segment of his right eye was normal and the left eye showed a large leukomatous corneal opacity involving the whole cornea with band-shaped keratopathy and exotropia. The conjunctiva and the tear film of both eyes were normal. He was advised to undergo a tattooing procedure for his left corneal opacity to improve cosmesis.