Have your eyes gone red? Are you suffering from severe itching and inflammation of the eyes? Watch out, for you may be having a condition known as Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis. Read on to know what is Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis, its causes, symptoms, diagnosis and treatment.
Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis Definition
Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis is a type of Conjunctivitis or inflammation of the Conjunctiva of the eyes. It generally arises due to exposure of the eyes to allergenic substances present in contact lenses
This disease is said to account for approximately 0.5 – 1% of all kinds of eye diseases.
Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis Signs and Symptoms
Some of the main symptoms of Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis are
Redness of the eyes is the first Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis symptoms. One or both eyes of the affected individual turn red in appearance.
In Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis red eyes are associated with swelling of the inner side of the upper eyelid. Plaques and rough bumps arise on the surface of the eyelid.
In most cases, there is thick mucosal discharge from both eyes of a person. This eye discharge makes it difficult to see things properly.
There is also severe irritation of the eyes for the most part of the day. This makes vision difficult for a person and leads to discomfort in the eyes. In Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis burning eye sensation is also not uncommon.
The condition may also make the eyes extremely sensitive towards light. Affected individuals experience pain in the eyes while looking at light of even moderate intensity.
Contact lens intolerance
People with Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis also find it increasingly difficult to keep contact lenses in their eyes for an extended period of time. It leads to severe irritation and discomfort, usually in both eyes.
Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis Causes
As aforesaid, Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis is caused when the Conjunctiva of the eyes is exposed to allergens from contact lenses, sutures and prosthetics. Sleeping with contacts in the eyes increases the risk of having this disease. Exposure of eyes to suture knots left behind after operation can also lead to this disorder. Once eye surgery is over these knots are left in place. These dissolve naturally once the eye heals or may be removed by the surgeon. Contact with non-removed suture knots can give rise to this disease.
In some cases, Hay Fever is also found to be one of the causes of Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis.
Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis and Contact Lenses
This condition is estimated to affect about 1-5% wearers of firm, gas permeable contacts and 10-15% of hydrogel lens users.
The disease is supposed to result from
- Contact of the conjunctiva with allergens present in the lens itself
- Exposure of eyes to the preservative where the lens is kept
- Exposure to protein deposits present on the lens
Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis Diagnosis
Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis is mainly diagnosed by physical observation of the eyes and taking the medical history of the patient into account. Doctors often stress on removing lenses to make sure that the patient is not suffering from other conditions like Atopic Keratoconjunctivitis.
Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis Differential Diagnosis
For medical researchers analyzing Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis Blepharitis, Dry eyes, Bacterial Conjunctivitis, Atopic Conjunctivitis and Vernal Conjunctivitis are some conditions to keep in mind. GPC may be confused with any of these diseases which lead to similar eye problems.
Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis Treatment
Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis may be treated with the aid of topical mast cell stabilizers like Cromolyn Sodium which reduces the release of histamine from these cells. It is the aminoalkane Histamine is released from the mast cells as a natural reaction of the body against foreign bodies like allergens. It is Histamine that causes inflammation of the Conjunctiva and leads to Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis.
Administering a preparation of Cromolyn Sodium 3-4 times daily can be an effective Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis drug in the initial stages of the disease. This can be followed by topical supportive therapies for 4-6 weeks or until the end of the symptoms. Another effective mast cell stabilizer is Iodoxamide (Alomide). It is a safe drug and its daily usage can help cure a number of allergic conditions.
Other effective Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis medications are Olopatadine (Patanol) which combines antihistamine properties along with mast cell stabilization.
The disease can also be treated with the use of eye medications like Cromolyn (Opticrom) and Iodoxamide (Alomide). Patients should not wear contact lenses during the entire time that these medications are being continued.
If Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis is found to be a result of hay fever, medications may be needed to cure the condition in a systemic way. Eye medications are also required to treat the ocular problems. In Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis antibiotics are not generally used for cure.
Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis Remedies
Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis cure is possible by following a few simple tips other than medications. These include
Avoiding contact lens use
Non-usage of contact lenses can go a long way in curing the condition. This is especially necessary during the time that medications are being used for cure. It is better to get glasses made for vision improvement.
Changing contact lens type
Particular types of contact lens can also give rise to Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis. If you suspect your eye condition to be a result of your contact lens type, changing it can go a long way in cure.
Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis Prevention
The condition can be averted by following a few basic tips. These involve
Using disposable lenses
Use of disposable lenses on a day-to-day basis can help you avoid this disorder. That way, you get a clean pair of lenses to wear everyday and there is little risk for your eyes to get exposed to allergens.
Cleaning existing lenses
Most cases of Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis in contact lens wearers arise from use of unclean contacts. Changing your contact lenses properly before wearing them can keep your eyes safe.
Using unpreserved solutions
Soft lens wearers should keep their lenses in unpreserved solutions whenever possible to avoid getting this disease. It is best to rinse contacts in unpreserved saline solutions before using.
Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis Natural Treatment
Treatment of Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis at home can be done with the aid of cold compresses. Soak a clean washcloth thoroughly with pure cold water. Press this over the affected eyes to get relief from itching and irritation.
Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis Management
The aim of Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis management is to reduce the symptoms resulting from the condition. Topical supportive therapies help flush away allergens and other wastes and helps decrease the effect of the disease. Refresh Plus, Bion Tears and Dry Eye Therapy may help achieve Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis improvement.
In Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis hypersensitivity to light can be controlled with the aid of sunglasses. Wearing dark glasses can help patients look at bright light without any discomfort or painful sensations.
Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis Complications
In Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis dangers of severe eye problems exist which makes quicker diagnosis and treatment of the condition highly essential. In acute cases of Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis blurred vision may occur due to abnormal movement of eye lenses. This may happen due to the presence of mucosal tissue bumps under the eyelid or deposition of debris on the lens during inflammation.
Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis Stages
There are four stages of Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis. These are
Preclinical Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis
This is the earliest stage of the disorder. Certain spots of the eyelid turn red and rough in this stage. There is also inflammation of the eyelid. In this early stage, the condition is also known as Contact Lens Associated Papillary Conjunctivitis or Contact Lens Papillary Conjunctivitis.
Mild Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis
In this phase, small bumps arise on the eyelid. These are small and create minor difficulties in clear vision.
Moderate Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis
The Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis bumps grow larger than 1 mm in this stage and leads to blurred vision in sufferers. Patients often find their lenses going upward as they blink.
Severe Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis
In acute stage, there is usually blurring of vision and the patient suffers from eyesight problems.
Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis Prognosis
The condition has an excellent prognosis. With effective treatment, it takes anywhere from 1-6 weeks to resolve completely.
Is Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis Contagious?
Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis is caused by exposure of the Conjunctiva to allergens in the contact lenses. The disease is not caused by viral or bacterial infection but by natural reaction of the body’s own immune system. Thus, it is not a contagious condition.
Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis Pictures
Want to know how eyes affected with Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis appear to view? Here are some Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis photos to provide you with some visual idea about the appearance of eyes affected by this discomforting condition. Check out these Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis images and know how the disease looks like.
If neglected and left untreated Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis can lead to serious eye problems. If you suspect yourself or anyone in your family to be suffering from Giant Papillary Conjunctivitis, it is advisable that you immediately get in touch with an ophthalmologist. Timely treatment will help avoid all possible complications and ensure safety of the eyes, which is one of our most vital sense organs.