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What are dendritic ulcers?

What are dendritic ulcers?

A dendritic ulcer results from a corneal infection secondary to the Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV) type 1. This is a DNA virus which commonly infects children and young adults, often initially manifesting as a non-specific upper respiratory tract illness.

How do you get a dendritic ulcer?

Dendritic ulcers can recur during times of stress, when tired, or be triggered by sunlight. Dark glasses help during an attack, and could help to prevent a recurrence if worn whilst it is sunny.

How can you tell the difference between corneal abrasion and ulcer?

A corneal abrasion is a scrape of the top layer, the epithelium, but does not go through Bowman’s layer underneath this. A corneal ulcer is an open sore/erosion (from inflammation or infection) that goes through Bowman’s layer into the deeper layers of the cornea.

What are the types of corneal ulcer?

Corneal ulcers are usually caused by the following types of infections:

  • Bacterial infections.
  • Viral infections.
  • Fungal infections.
  • Parasitic (Acanthamoeba) infections.
  • Abrasions or burns to the cornea caused by injury to the eye.
  • Dry eye syndrome.

How is dendritic ulcer treated?

Diagnosis is confirmed by finding a dendritic ulcer or by viral culture. Treatment requires antivirals, usually topical ganciclovir or trifluridine or oral acyclovir or valacyclovir.

What bacteria causes corneal ulcers?

Eighty percent of bacterial corneal ulcers are caused by Staphylococcus aureus, Streptococcus pneumoniae and Pseudomonas species. Pseudomonas aeruginosa is the most frequent and the most pathogenic ocular pathogen which can cause corneal perforation in just 72 hours.

Why do dendritic ulcers have terminal bulbs?

The HSV dendrite possesses terminal bulbs that distinguish it from the herpes zoster pseudodendrite and follows the nerve pattern of the cornea.

What is an ulcer of the eye?

A corneal ulcer is an eye infection that causes an open sore on the cornea (the clear layer in front of the iris and pupil). Contact lenses, injuries, disorders, drugs, and nutritional deficiencies can cause open sores (ulcers) to form on the cornea.

Do corneal ulcers go away?

If the ulcer is in the central cornea, the condition usually takes longer to heal. There also is a greater risk of vision loss from a central corneal ulcer. Eye trauma increases your risk of a corneal ulcer from fungal keratitis.

What is Mooren ulcer?

Background: Mooren’s ulcer is a rapidly progressive, painful, ulcerative keratitis which initially affects the peripheral cornea and may spread circumferentially and then centrally.

What kind of ulcer looks like a dendrite?

Many corneal epithelial lesions can look ‘dendritic’: Herpes Simplex Keratitis – the classic branching ulcer with rolled edges, which can transform into a geographic ulcer – (typically after using steroid drops).

When to seek medical attention for a dendritic ulcer?

Dendritic ulcers can recur. It is helpful to keep a tube of unopened cream with you, especially if you are going on holiday. It is quite safe to start treatment yourself if you have an attack; however, you should still seek medical attention within 48 hours of the symptoms recurring.

Can a corneal abrasion look like a dendrite?

Epithelial abrasion – as these heal they can easy look dendritic, especially just before and just after the epithelium meets and the abrasion closes. Recurrent Corneal erosion syndrome can lead to heaped up linear lesions, and when larger areas heal you can see epithelial lines similar to the photo above.

How is herpes simplex keratitis similar to a geographic ulcer?

The underlying stroma has minimal inflammation. After dendritic epithelial keratitis resolves, a dendritic scar, called a ghost dendrite, may remain in the superficial stroma. Geographic ulcer is similar to the dendritic ulcer, also caused by replicating virus, but has a much larger epithelial defect.