Purpose: To establish a relation between prolonged severe vernal conjunctivitis and upper eyelid ptosis.
Methods: The study consisted of 12 patients between the ages of 19 and 32 years with acquired ptosis who presented in our clinic between September 2001 and February 2005. Potential factors responsible for acquired ptosis were investigated in all patients, with specific attention to the history and severity of vernal conjunctivitis.
Results: We found vernal conjunctivitis to be the identifiable cause in 8 men and 4 women with acquired ptosis. There was neither contact lens usage nor trauma or ocular surgery history in their medical records. The blepharoptosis was caused by levator disinsertion and recession of the aponeurosis. The pathology improved in each case after reattachment of the aponeurosis to the superior tarsal border.
Conclusions: These findings suggest that prolonged severe vernal conjunctivitis may induce a lower position of the upper eyelid and eventually lead to ptosis through levator disinsertion that is similar to involutional ptosis. We believe that chronic inflammation of the upper eyelid with giant papillary conjunctivitis and persistent rubbing of the eyelids may be responsible for the development of this pathology.