Episcleritis

Opthalmology

Clinicals - History

Fact Explanation
Eye discomfort. Due to the inflammation of the episcleral tissue . Eye discomfort.
Due to the inflammation of the episcleral tissue .
Red eye. Due to the engorgement of the superficial episcleral plexus . Red eye.
Due to the engorgement of the superficial episcleral plexus .
Photophobia and tearing. These symptoms correlate with corneal changes but may also indicate a necrotizing process . Photophobia and tearing.
These symptoms correlate with corneal changes but may also indicate a necrotizing process .
History of morning stiffness and pain in small peripheral joints, occurring in bilaterally symmetrical distribution. Episcleritis is associated with rheumatoid arthritis due to the widespread vasculitis . History of morning stiffness and pain in small peripheral joints, occurring in bilaterally symmetrical distribution.
Episcleritis is associated with rheumatoid arthritis due to the widespread vasculitis .
History of asthma or hay fever. Episcleritis is associated with atopy . History of asthma or hay fever.
Episcleritis is associated with atopy .
History of genital lesions or multiple sexual partners. Syphilis can lead to inflammation in any area of the globe . History of genital lesions or multiple sexual partners.
Syphilis can lead to inflammation in any area of the globe .

Clinicals - Examination

Fact Explanation
Diffuse or localized bulbar conjunctival injection. Due to the engorgement of the superficial episcleral plexus . Diffuse or localized bulbar conjunctival injection.
Due to the engorgement of the superficial episcleral plexus .
Watery discharge. It correlates with corneal changes but may also indicate a necrotizing process . Watery discharge.
It correlates with corneal changes but may also indicate a necrotizing process .
A mobile nodule in the sclera. These are focal areas of dilated blood vessels and occur in nodular episcleritis . A mobile nodule in the sclera.
These are focal areas of dilated blood vessels and occur in nodular episcleritis .
Peripheral corneal infiltrates. Due to an extension of localised scleral oedema into the cornea . Peripheral corneal infiltrates.
Due to an extension of localised scleral oedema into the cornea .
Congested episcleral vessels which run radially and are salmon pink in color, detected on slit lamp examination of the eye. Dilatation of the different plexuses of vessels are easily identified on slit-lamp examination. The slit-lamp detects the depth
of maximum vascular congestion and site of oedema, thus allowing episcleritis to be distinguished from scleritis .
Congested episcleral vessels which run radially and are salmon pink in color, detected on slit lamp examination of the eye.
Dilatation of the different plexuses of vessels are easily identified on slit-lamp examination. The slit-lamp detects the depth
of maximum vascular congestion and site of oedema, thus allowing episcleritis to be distinguished from scleritis .

Investigations - Diagnosis

Fact Explanation
No investigations needed in the majority. Episcleritis is of idiopathic origin in two thirds of cases and usually improves after 1 week . No investigations needed in the majority.
Episcleritis is of idiopathic origin in two thirds of cases and usually improves after 1 week .

Investigations - Management

Fact Explanation
Serum uric acid levels. It is elevated in gout which is known to be associated with episcleritis . Serum uric acid levels.
It is elevated in gout which is known to be associated with episcleritis .
Rheumatoid factor in blood. It is positive in rheumatoid arthritis which is known to be associated with episcleritis . Rheumatoid factor in blood.
It is positive in rheumatoid arthritis which is known to be associated with episcleritis .
antinuclear antibody levels in serum. It is positive in Systemic lupus erythematosus which is known to be associated with episcleritis . antinuclear antibody levels in serum.
It is positive in Systemic lupus erythematosus which is known to be associated with episcleritis .
Chest X ray. To exclude Tuberculosis and Sarcoidosis which are known associations of episcleritis . Chest X ray.
To exclude Tuberculosis and Sarcoidosis which are known associations of episcleritis .
Venereal Disease Research Laboratory (VDRL) test. To exclude syphilis which is a known association of episcleritis . Venereal Disease Research Laboratory (VDRL) test.
To exclude syphilis which is a known association of episcleritis .

Management - Supportive

Fact Explanation
Artificial tears.(It is all that is needed in simple episcleritis.) It acts as an ocular lubricant and provides relief from the discomfort in the eye . Artificial tears.(It is all that is needed in simple episcleritis.)
It acts as an ocular lubricant and provides relief from the discomfort in the eye .
Avoid close contact with agents known to cause exogenous sensitization. Atopy is known to be associated with episcleritis . Avoid close contact with agents known to cause exogenous sensitization.
Atopy is known to be associated with episcleritis .

Management - Specific

Fact Explanation
Prednisolone acetate 1% ophthalmic solution. Dose: 1-2 drops twice a day. Gradual dose reduction is necessary before discontinuing treatment. (It is required in nodular episcleritis) It suppresses the inflammation in episcleritis . Prednisolone acetate 1% ophthalmic solution. Dose: 1-2 drops twice a day. Gradual dose reduction is necessary before discontinuing treatment. (It is required in nodular episcleritis)
It suppresses the inflammation in episcleritis .
Flurbiprofen. Dose: 100 mg three times a day. (If nodular episcleritis is unresponsive to topical therapy) Inhibits prostaglandin mediated ocular inflammation . Flurbiprofen. Dose: 100 mg three times a day. (If nodular episcleritis is unresponsive to topical therapy)
Inhibits prostaglandin mediated ocular inflammation .

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