Self-inflicted anterior scleritis

Academic Article


  • Purpose: To describe and clinically characterize a syndrome of self-inflicted scleritis. Study Design: Case reports and literature review. Methods: Two patients had persistent scleritis at presentation. Both did not respond to prescribed therapy, including systemic corticosteroids and immunosuppression. The first had unexplained, diffuse anterior scleritis and persistent linear keratoconjunctival abrasions after a work-related injury. Several objective indicators pointed to concealed noncompliance with medications. The second patient was a medical assistant with diffuse, unilateral anterior scleritis and unexplained visual loss. Systemic work-up was negative. She had pharmacologic mydriasis and keratoconjunctival abrasions at presentation. Results: Systemic therapy was stopped in both patients. The first patient, who was in the process of requesting permanent disability status, showed persistent inflammation on each follow-up visit. The second patient improved with no further therapy after she was confronted with objective indicators of a self-inflicted condition. Conclusions: Although the presentation of self-inflicted scleritis can be similar to that of idiopathic or autoimmune anterior scleritis, the former may show additional findings of traumatic conjunctival and corneal abrasions. Indicators of self-inflicted etiology, of which malingering is one such entity, include evidence of concealed noncompliance with prescribed treatments and lack of response to potent antiinflammatory and immunosuppressive agents. Correct diagnosis including early psychiatric evaluation in all such cases, may help prevent unnecessary treatment and unjustified work-related compensation. © 2001 by the American Academy of Ophthalmology.
  • Authors

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Zamir E; Read RW; Rao NA
  • Start Page

  • 192
  • End Page

  • 195
  • Volume

  • 108
  • Issue

  • 1