With the onset of summer, conjunctivitis is on the prowl. Doctors said though the peak period for the eye disease is yet to come, the number of patients has already started picking up. Since the viral conjunctivitis is highly contagious, the infection can soon assume an alarming proportion if the affected and those who are in their close contact don’t take preventive and precautionary measures.
“The infection itself is self limiting (an illness or condition which will resolve on its own), lasting between three days to two weeks. But, the infection caused by adenovirus is contagious and hence the need for precautionary measures,” said Keshab Haldar, an eye specialist.
If the infection affects only the conjunctiva, it’s easy to tackle. But the real concern is when the infection affects the cornea. According to doctors, in about 20%-30% of all conjunctivitis cases, the infection is more virulent involving the cornea.Since it threatens the vision there is a need for medical attention.
“Of the six cases I handled in the past two weeks, two involved the cornea. Now we have a kit that can detect if the infection is caused by adenovirus. If detected early, we can prevent the infection from spreading to the cornea. But the problem is people come rushing only when the vision is affected,” said Jayangshu Sengupta, cornea and refractive surgeon.