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Allergic Conjunctivitis (AC)

Allergic conjunctivitis is inflammation of the conjunctiva, which is the membrane covering the white part of the eye, due to allergy. Although allergens differ among patients, the most common cause is hay fever. Symptoms consist of redness, edema of the conjunctiva, itching, and increased lacrimation. If this is combined with rhinitis, the condition is termed allergic rhinoconjunctivitis. Treatment of allergic conjunctivitis is by avoiding the allergen and treatment with antihistamines, either topical (in the form of eye drops), or systemic (in the form of tablets). Antihistamines, medications that stabilize mast cells, and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are generally safe and usually effective.