Topical treatment for blepharokeratoconjunctivitis (BKC) in children

Full citation: O'Gallagher M, Bunce C, Hingorani M, Larkin F, Tuft S, Dahlmann-Noor A. Topical treatments for blepharokeratoconjunctivitis in children. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2017, Issue 2. Art. No.: CD011965. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD011965.pub2

What is the aim of this review?
The aim of this Cochrane review was to find out if topical treatment (by eye drops or ointments) for BKC in children improves symptoms and is safe. Cochrane researchers collected and analysed all relevant studies to answer this question and included one study in this review.

Key messages
There is no good evidence as to the benefits and harms of topical treatments for BKC in children.

What was studied in the review?
When the surface of the eye and eyelids becomes inflamed this is known as blepharokeratoconjunctivitis or BKC. This can cause watery, itchy, red eyes that are painful in bright light. Occasionally it can lead to scarring at the front of the eye and result in loss of vision. It is a quite common reason for children attending for eye care. Antibiotics, steroids and lubricants have been considered as possible treatments for this condition and can be given as eye drops or ointments.

What are the main results of the review?
Cochrane researchers found one study that looked at the effects of a combination of steroids and antibiotics in treatment of BKC in children. The study did not report the effects of this treatment clearly and was too small to provide a good assessment of safety.

How up-to-date is this review?
The Cochrane researchers searched for studies that had been published up to 11 July 2016.