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Herpes and The Eye - Don't miss this important news!

A report in the September issue of Archives of Ophthalmologysays that the administration of oral medications following a herpes simplex virus infection may reduce the risk of recurring eye-related manifestations of the disease. Herpes simplex virus (HSV) is the leading infectious cause of corneal blindness among developed nations. A study of? 394 patients with ocular HSV were evaluated in a study conducted by the Mayo Clinic. 175 of the patients were prescribed oral antiviral therapy. The results were that patients who were not taking this prophylactic therapy were 9.4 times more likely to have a recurrence of an infection of the top layer of the cornea, 8.4 times more likely to have a recurrence of? an infection of the deeper layers of the cornea and 34.5 times more likely to have a recurrence of eyelid infection or conjunctivitis than those taking the antiviral medications. HSV establishes a latent infection in sensory nerve structures after the initial exposure to the virus and the ensuing systemic infection. If the latent infection is reactivated, it could lead to initial or recurrent disase in one or both eyes. The results of the study show that oral antiviral therapy offer a significant protective effect on recurrences of ocular HSV. Andrea Schumann Staff Writer

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