PURPOSE: To evaluate the presence of atopy in patients with ocular cicatricial pemphigoid (OCP).
METHOD: Patient encounters between August 2005 and November 2016 at the Massachusetts Eye Research and Surgery Institute (MERSI) were searched to identify those with biopsy-proven OCP who had concurrent evidence of atopy.
RESULTS: There were 230 patients with biopsy-proven OCP. Thirty-three of them were found to have clinical symptoms of atopy (asthma, hay fever, and eczema) and of these, 23 had evidence of atopy in their conjunctival biopsy specimens. All patients were administered immunomodulatory therapy for treatment of their OCP with 20 patients requiring additional antiallergy treatment to control residual atopic ocular symptoms. Among patients who used antiallergy medications, 80% showed improvement in residual symptoms. Rituximab and/or intravenous immunoglobulin is a preferred OCP medication for patients with OCP with some evidence of atopy.
CONCLUSIONS: Clinicians should consider the coexistence of atopy in patients with OCP, especially in those with persistent symptoms after initiation of immunomodulatory therapy.