Ectoine Drops Can Manage Combined Atopic Keratoconjunctivitis, Dry Eye

Both atopic keratoconjunctivitis and dry eye disease can benefit from treatment with ectoine-containing drops.

Ectoine-containing eyedrop therapies have the potential to stabilize the lipid layer of the tear film, making them ideal for managing patients with atopic keratoconjunctivitis (AKC) in the setting of dry eye disease (DED), according to a presentation at the American Academy of Optometry 2022 meeting, held in San Diego, CA from October 26 to 29.

Sarah Aumond, OD, MSc, an optometrist with Clinique des Yeux de Laval a Sainte-Rose in Quebec, and Etty Bitton, OD, MSc, presented the case of a 31-year-old man of Asian ethnicity who presented with chronic burning sensation and fluctuation of vision. A corneal specialist had made a referral for dry eye evaluation.

The patient had been diagnosed 10 years previously with AKC, the least common and most severe subtype of allergic conjunctivitis. He had recently been diagnosed with meibomian gland dysfunction (MGD). His upper left eyelid had swelled for the prior few weeks. He said had taken artificial tears, oral and topical antihistamines, and corticosteroid drops in the past.

Ectoine-containing drops, combined with meibomian gland dysfunction therapies, boosted meibomian gland expression, decreased palpebral conjunctival hyperemia up to half, and addressed the patient’s major symptoms, according to the presentation.

The researchers said managing DED in the context of other ocular surface diseases can improve patient outcomes.


Aumond S, Bitton El. Atopic keratoconjunctivitis: a dry eye disease masquerader. Poster presented at: The American Academy of Optometry (AAO) 2022 annual meeting; October 26-29; San Diego, CA.