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A prospective, masked clinical trial of trifluridine, dexamethasone, and artificial tears in the treatment of epidemic keratoconjunctivitis.

Author(s): Ward JB, Siojo LG, Waller SG

Affiliation(s): Department of Ophthalmology, Primary Care, and Flight Medicine, 13th Air Force Medical Center, Clark Air Base, Republic of the Philippines.

Publication date & source: 1993-05, Cornea., 12(3):216-21.

Publication type: Clinical Trial; Comparative Study; Randomized Controlled Trial

Epidemics of viral conjunctivitis are a major public health problem in the Far East. No treatment has been shown to shorten the duration of illness. We studied the clinical course of epidemic keratoconjunctivitis in 74 patients during an outbreak of nearly 3,000 cases in late 1988 at a U.S. military base in the Philippines. Patients were randomly assigned to treatment with trifluridine, dexamethasone, or artificial tears, and examined in a double-masked fashion. There was no significant difference between the results of the three treatments. No bacterial cultures were positive. The prompt use of patient isolation, identification of nonadenoviral red eyes, and symptomatic treatment without steroids, antiviral, or antibiotic medication is recommended in cases of epidemic keratoconjunctivitis. This is the largest series of cases of epidemic keratoconjunctivitis with laboratory confirmation reported from the Philippines.

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