Targeted Therapies for Allergic Conjunctivitis

An Ophthalmologist's Perspective


  • King Chow, MD, FRCSC Department of Surgery, McMaster University; Department of Ophthalmology and Vision Sciences, University of Toronto; Clarity Eye Institute; Mount Sinai Hospital, Toronto



Allergic eye disease is extremely common as the eye is sensitive to irritants due to its constant exposure to the external environment. Approximately 40% of the general population is affected by ocular allergies. The majority of patients may also suffer with additional associated symptoms of allergic rhinitis, such as nasal congestion, sneeze, etc.; however, 6% may have isolated ocular symptoms. In addition, there are links between ocular allergies and other allergic conditions such as asthma, food allergy and atopic dermatitis. The challenge is that in addition to ocular symptoms, patients experience a substantial negative influence on their quality of life (QOL). The most common symptoms are watery and itchy eyes; redness; soreness; stinging; burning sensations; and swelling. Unfortunately, as these symptoms are quite common, most patients may choose to self-medicate and many cases are undiagnosed or underdiagnosed. As a result of this, patients may not utilize the correct management strategy; this can lead to a further propagation of symptoms and a greater reduction in patients’ QOL. Hence, it is crucial for patients to seek professional medical attention, while physicians must gather a comprehensive medical history and conduct relevant investigations. Additionally, the physician ought to propose the correct diagnosis and suitable treatment plan.

Author Biography

King Chow, MD, FRCSC, Department of Surgery, McMaster University; Department of Ophthalmology and Vision Sciences, University of Toronto; Clarity Eye Institute; Mount Sinai Hospital, Toronto

Dr. King Chow is a Royal College certified ophthalmologist with a special interest in medical and surgical management of ocular surface diseases. His practice also includes comprehensive ophthalmology, medical laser treatment of glaucoma and pterygium surgery. Dr. Chow completed an Honours Bachelor of Science degree in Human Behavioural Sciences at the University of Toronto. His undergraduate and postgraduate medical training was completed at the Schulich School of Medicine at Western University. He is a graduate of the residency program at Western University in London, Ontario. He is currently an Assistant Clinical Professor (Adjunct) in the Department of Surgery, McMaster University Waterloo Campus and a faculty member within the Department of Ophthalmology and Vision Sciences at the University of Toronto.


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How to Cite

Chow K. Targeted Therapies for Allergic Conjunctivitis: An Ophthalmologist’s Perspective. Can Allergy Immunol Today [Internet]. 2023 Aug. 31 [cited 2024 Jun. 14];3(2):19–23. Available from: