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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 10  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 145-149

Long-term use of 0.003% tacrolimus suspension for treatment of vernal keratoconjunctivitis

1 Ophthalmology Department, College of Medicine, King Khalid University, Abha, Saudi Arabia
2 Ophthalmology Department, Moorfields Eye Hospital, Dubai, United Arab Emirates
3 Department of Ophthalmology at Taibah University, KSA
4 Department of Ophthalmology at Umm Al-Qura University, KSA

Correspondence Address:
Abdulrahman Mohammed Al-Amri
College of Medicine, King Khalid University, P. O. Box: 641, Abha 61421
Saudi Arabia
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ojo.OJO_232_2014

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PURPOSE: To evaluate the safety and efficacy of 0.003% tacrolimus suspension for the treatment of refractory vernal keratoconjunctivitis (VKC). MATERIALS AND METHODS: This prospective study included 40 eyes of 20 patients with severe VKC. After discontinuing all other medications, patients were treated with varying doses of 0.003% tacrolimus suspension. All were followed for at least 24 months. Changes in signs and symptoms after treatment were evaluated; adverse events were assessed. The clinical response to the treatment was the most important measurement to achieve the conclusion. RESULTS: The mean age of the patients was 15.7 ± 1.4 years. Two patients discontinued treatment due to severe burning sensation and were excluded from the study. Significant improvements in all signs and symptoms, including itching, foreign body sensation, papillae, and Trantas dots, were seen in all patients 6 weeks after starting topical tacrolimus. Itching was the first symptom to improve. Treatment was gradually reduced, and intervals were increasing between applications. Recurrence occurred in all patients who attempted to discontinue treatment. No additional medications were required to provide relief, and no significant changes in visual acuity or refraction were seen. CONCLUSIONS: The safety and efficacy of 0.003% Tacrolimus suspension treatment for refractory VKC were achieved and it can be considered a useful option instead of steroids, despite the poor compliance in few patients due its adverse effects.

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