Conjunctival impression cytology and tear-film changes in patients with psoriasis

Cornea. 1999 Sep;18(5):544-8.


Purpose: In this study, we evaluated ocular-surface changes and tear-film functions in patients with plaque-type psoriasis.

Methods: This study was performed on two groups. Group I included 100 eyes of 50 subjects with chronic plaque-type psoriasis whose diagnoses were confirmed with skin biopsy. Group II included 100 eyes of 50 healthy volunteers who were in the same age and sex distribution. Ocular-surface changes were evaluated on the cell content of the surface conjunctival epithelium by conjunctival impression cytology and tear-film functions by the Schirmer I test and break-up time (BUT).

Results: Of the patients with psoriasis, 50% had a grade 0, 30% had a grade I, and 20% had a grade II conjunctival impression cytology differentiation compared with 95, 3, and 2%, respectively in the control group (p < 0.001). Snake-like appearance of nuclear chromatin in conjunctival epithelial cells was demonstrated in 12% of eyes in group I but in 2% of eyes in group II. The Schirmer's test results showed that average values were 10.1 +/- 5.8 mm in group I and 12.6 +/- 5.5 mm in group II (p > 0.001). The mean break-up time was 7.8 +/- 3.7 s in group I and 12.5 +/- 4.6 s in group II (p < 0.001).

Conclusions: We showed the early conjunctival changes in patients with psoriasis. According to these results, primary etiologic factors may contribute to ocular lesions in psoriasis.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Conjunctiva / pathology*
  • Conjunctival Diseases / metabolism
  • Conjunctival Diseases / pathology*
  • Dry Eye Syndromes / metabolism
  • Dry Eye Syndromes / pathology*
  • Epithelium / pathology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Psoriasis / metabolism
  • Psoriasis / pathology*
  • Tears / metabolism*