Comprehensive approach to ocular consequences of Stevens Johnson Syndrome - the aftermath of a systemic condition

Graefes Arch Clin Exp Ophthalmol. 2014 Mar;252(3):457-67. doi: 10.1007/s00417-014-2568-8. Epub 2014 Jan 29.


Background: Stevens Johnson Syndrome (SJS) can lead to end stage corneal blindness. This study describes the comprehensive treatment measures and their outcomes in the management of ocular sequelae and complications of SJS.

Methods: Four hundred sixty-four eyes of 232 patients of SJS who underwent surgical intervention (punctal cautery, mucus membrane grafting for lid margin keratinisation, fornix reconstructive procedures, tectonic procedures, keratoplasty and keratoprosthesis) were studied. It was a non-comparative, retrospective, interventional case series. The primary outcome was the change in the best corrected visual acuity (BCVA). Secondary outcome measures included an improvement in the ocular surface status as indicated by corneal epithelial fluorescein staining and Schirmer's I strip wetting.

Results: The BCVA and the ocular surface status improved and/or stabilized in > 70 % of eyes following punctal cautery (n = 160) and > 80 % of eyes following lid margin mucus membrane grafting (n = 238). BCVA improved in 50 % of eyes following fornix reconstructive procedures (n = 24) with COMET (n = 6), in 63.9 % eyes with the Prosthetic Replacement of the Ocular Surface Ecosystem (PROSE) lens (n = 36), in 81.8 % of eyes after cataract surgery (n = 22). A BCVA of ≥20/200 was achieved in 72.34 % of eyes following keratoprostheses procedures (n = 47). The mean duration of follow up was 53.3 ± 15.2 months.

Conclusion: The ocular sequelae of Stevens Johnson Syndrome can be blinding. They need to be identified and addressed early to retard the continued deterioration of the ocular surface. Our study aims to highlight the problem as well as the importance of comprehensive measures in the management of this potentially blinding disorder.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Amnion / transplantation
  • Cataract Extraction
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Chronic Disease
  • Conjunctival Diseases / diagnosis*
  • Conjunctival Diseases / surgery
  • Corneal Diseases / diagnosis*
  • Corneal Diseases / surgery
  • Corneal Transplantation
  • Eyelid Diseases / diagnosis*
  • Eyelid Diseases / surgery
  • Female
  • Fluorophotometry
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Mucous Membrane / transplantation
  • Ophthalmologic Surgical Procedures
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Stevens-Johnson Syndrome / diagnosis*
  • Stevens-Johnson Syndrome / surgery
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Visual Acuity / physiology
  • Young Adult