Allergic conjunctivitis is inflammation of the tissue lining the eyelids (conjunctiva) due to a reaction from allergy-causing substances such as pollen and dander.
See also: ConjunctivitisAlternative Names
Conjunctivitis - allergicCauses, incidence, and risk factors
When your eyes are exposed to anything to which you are allergic, histamine is released and the blood vessels in the conjunctiva become swollen (the conjunctiva is the clear membrane that covers the "white" of the eye). Reddening of the eyes develops quickly and is accompanied by itching and tearing.
Allergies tend to run in families, although no obvious mode of inheritance is recognized. The incidence of allergy is difficult to determine, because many different conditions are often lumped under the term allergy. Keep in mind that rubbing the eyes makes the situation worse.
Review Date: 08/11/2010
Reviewed By: Franklin W. Lusby, MD, Ophthalmologist, Lusby Vision Institute, La
Jolla, California. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical
Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.
A.D.A.M., Inc. is accredited by URAC, also known as the American Accreditation HealthCare Commission (www.urac.org)