In such cases, a small sore develops on the palpebral conjunctiva (the membrane lining the inner eyelid) and is often accompanied by conjunctivitis (inflammation of the membrane) and swollen lymph nodes in front of the ear.
The diagnosis of inclusion conjunctivitis cannot be made definitively without laboratory testing, but the signs of inclusion conjunctivitis can be seen by the eye care provider, even if a patient is not symptomatic.
Conjunctivitis due to a viral infection, particularly those due to adenoviruses, are usually treated by applying warm compresses to the affected area and using topical antibiotic ointments to prevent secondary bacterial infections.
Allergic conjunctivitis can be treated by removing the allergic substance from a person's environment, if possible; by applying cool compresses to the eye; and by administering eye drops four to six times daily for four days.
If there is no relief of symptoms in 48 to 72 hours, or there is moderate to severe eye pain, changes in vision, or the conjunctivitis is suspected to be caused by herpes simplex, a physician should be notified immediately.
The laboratory testing for inclusion conjunctivitis begins with swabbing a sample from the inside of the eyelids to test for the presence of the characteristic inclusion bodies made only by chlamydia.
Allergens that doctors most commonly use in immunotherapy treatments for allergic rhinitis, allergic conjunctivitis, and allergic asthma include extracts of inhalant allergens from tree, grass, and weed pollens; mold spores; and dust mites.
Since in the United States adult inclusion conjunctivitis is primarily a sexually transmitted disease, the incidence of inclusion conjunctivitis can be decreased either through abstinence or through the use of condoms.
Up to 80 percent of female adults and adolescents with inclusion conjunctivitis are asymptomatic, and almost half of those with adult inclusion conjunctivitis do not have a systemic infection of chlamydia.
The organism sometimes invades localized areas of tissue, producing meningitis, infectious arthritis, conjunctivitis, cellulitis, epiglottitis, or inflammation of the membrane surrounding the heart.