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Clostridium difficile 

Clostridium difficile
Chapter:
Clostridium difficile
DOI:
10.1093/med/9780198729228.003.0058
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date: 26 June 2019

Conjunctivitis is the most frequently presenting disorder of the eye. It is usually self-limiting, and the risk of long-term complications is low. It involves inflammation of the conjunctiva; associated corneal involvement gives rise to keratoconjunctivitis. Conjunctivitis may be due to bacterial or viral infection or allergic hypersensitivity. Bacteria are responsible for 33–78% of cases (especially in infants and toddlers), while viral conjunctivitis is commoner in school-aged children and adolescents. The symptoms and signs are similar in viral, bacterial, and allergic conjunctivitis and include itching, burning, mucopurulent or purulent discharge, eyelid oedema, and conjunctival erythema. Investigations are usually not warranted, although children with suspected ocular HSV infection or ophthalmia neonatorum require both investigation and empiric antimicrobial management. The benefit of antibiotics for other causes of conjunctivitis is less certain. Excellent infection control measures are required in the clinical setting and in the community to prevent further spread.

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