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Middle East African Journal of Ophthalmology Middle East African Journal of Ophthalmology
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Year : 2014  |  Volume : 21  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 61-65

Prickly pear spine keratoconjunctivitis

1 Ophthalmology Clinic, Prince Rashid Bin Al- Hassan Military Hospital, Irbid, Jordan
2 Dermatology Clinic, King Hussein Medical Center, Amman, Jordan
3 Dental Clinic, Prince Rashid Bin Al- Hassan Military Hospital, Irbid, Jordan

Correspondence Address:
Thabit Ali Mustafa Odat
PO Box 2740, Irbid - 21110
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0974-9233.124100

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Objectives: To study the ocular and extra-ocular features, clinical presentation, and treatment of prickly pear glochids. Materials and Methods: This retrospective study included 23 eyes of 21 patients with ocular prickly pear spines who were seen between August and October 2011 in the outpatient ophthalmic clinic at Prince Rashid Bin Al Hassan military hospital in Jordan. Medical records of patients including age, gender, history of exposure to prickly pear plants, and ocular examination were reviewed. All glochids were localized and removed with forceps under topical anesthesia with the patient at the slit lamp. Patients were followed up after one week. Results: The mean age of patients was 37.1 years with a male to female ratio of 1.6: 1. Involvement of the right eye was seen in 61.9% patients, left eye in 28.6% patients, and bilateral involvement in 9.5% patients. Glochids were most commonly found in the upper subtarsal conjunctival space (47.6%) followed by inferior palpebral conjunctiva in 23.8% eyes. The most common complaint was eye irritation in 95.2% patients. Pain was a complaint in 57.1% patients. Superior corneal epithelial erosions or ulcer were found in 33.3% patients, inferior corneal epithelial erosions in 19.1% patients, and diffuse epithelial erosions in 9.5% patients. Glochids were found in other parts of the body in 38.1% patients. Conclusion: Although prickly pear glochid ocular surface injury is not uncommon in the region during summer, it should be considered in patient with eye pain during that period. Farmers who are in close contact with prickly pears should use protective eyeglasses and gloves.

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