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Papers of the Week

2020 Jul-Sep

Saudi J Ophthalmol



Ophthalmia nodosa secondary to multiple intraocular caterpillar hairs in a 2-year-old girl.


Al Somali AI, Otaif W, Afifi TM, Moustsfa UA, Emara KE
Saudi J Ophthalmol. 2020 Jul-Sep; 34(3):230-232.
PMID: 34085024.


A 2-year-old girl presented with pain, itching, photophobia, and tearing in her left eye. These symptoms started after contact with a caterpillar. The patient was initially taken to another hospital, where the local ophthalmologist prescribed topical prednisolone acetate 1%, a topical antibiotic, and cyclopentolate 1% eye drops. However, 3 weeks later, the patient presented to our hospital with no symptomatic improvement. Slit-lamp examination showed moderate conjunctival injection and diffuse superficial punctate corneal epithelial erosions with numerous caterpillar hairs embedded in the bulbar and tarsal conjunctiva, and in the superficial and deep corneal stroma, extending into the anterior chamber (AC). In addition, the AC had 2+ cells with caterpillar hairs on the iris surface. The lens was clear, and the fundus examination was normal. The patient underwent AC wash and setae removal under general anesthesia; this was repeated 4 months later when symptoms recurred owing to retained setae. There was no evidence of any additional setae or ocular inflammation in 8 months of follow-up, and symptoms resolved completely. Caterpillar hairs can migrate intraocularly and induce an ocular inflammatory response. Immediate and thorough irrigation, continued scrupulous examinations for any retained setae, and meticulous setae extraction are crucial for treating this condition.