• When will my inflammation from adenovirus go away?


    Question:

    Several months after recovering from adenovirus conjunctivitis (a viral type of pink eye that is very contagious), I still have subepithelial infiltrates (SEIs), despite using steroids for a month during the initial recovery stage.

    Will the SEIs go away without further treatment? At this stage, can they still cause corneal scarring? I’m not keen for long-term treatment with steroids or Restasis.


    Answer:

    Subepithelial infiltrates (SEIs) are an inflammatory response to the adenovirus. In most cases, they are treated with steroid eye drops. In some cases, it can be difficult to taper off the steroids without them coming back. The general strategy is to taper slowly or with weaker steroids to gently ease the patient's eye off steroids. If patients are steroid dependent, meaning the infiltrates recur whenever steroids are discontinued, cyclosporin can be prescribed off-label (i.e. for a reason other than what the drug was approved for by the FDA) to provide a safer long-term alternative to steroids.

    If you are on steroids now and the SEIs have not resolved, they are not likely to go away without continued or higher potency steroids. However, if they have been there for months and are not responding to steroids, there may actually be corneal scarring instead. While the scarring may not respond to medical treatment, it may fade over time.


    Answered By: