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Keywords:

  • allergen avoidance;
  • allergic rhinitis;
  • conjunctivitis;
  • pollen;
  • sunglasses

Background

Although allergen avoidance can lead to significant improvements in symptoms of allergic rhinitis, there are very few studies in this area. Sunglasses could be effective for protection of eyes from pollen as a cheap, comfortable, and simple avoidance option for allergens. The aim of this study is to determine if wearing sunglasses can decrease ocular symptoms.

Methods

Ocular symptomatic patients (39 total) who had a confirmed history of seasonal rhinitis by skin prick tests and negative skin prick tests for perennial allergens were included in the study. The duration of the study was 4 weeks with 3 required visits. At the onset of the 1-week run-in period, patients were randomized and divided into 2 groups. Group I (n = 18) received topical aqueous nasal budesonide regularly and loratadine once daily as a rescue medication. Group II (n = 21) wore sunglasses during daytime as an addition to this medication. Subjective data included a daily diary recording nasal and ocular symptom scores and antihistamine need during the study period.

Results

Sunglasses significantly reduced ocular symptoms (p = 0.002) and use of antihistamines (p = 0.009).

Conclusion

Sunglasses are an inexpensive and simple treatment for patients with allergic conjunctivitis.