Purpose of review
The rising global burden of allergic diseases, particularly in the pediatric population, is of serious concern. Ocular allergy is one of the most common ocular pathologies met in clinical practice. A large proportion of children and adolescents suffer from allergic eye diseases (AEDs), which affect their quality of life. The available treatments and surgical modalities have their limitations and side effects. Therefore, the development of novel and alternate strategies is the need of the hour and requires a timely review of currently available knowledge.
The current review covers the incidence and prevalence of AEDs, factors influencing occurrence and severity of AED (age, sex, socioeconomic status etc.), underlying mechanisms, role of allergy testing and immunotherapy in children, development of diagnostic markers and novel therapies including cells and molecules.
Understanding the demographics, clinical patterns and risk factors of AED can help formulate appropriate preventive and therapeutic strategies for the effective management of this common cause of ocular morbidity. The future therapeutics for AED seems to rely primarily on cells (mesenchymal stem cells, Tregs, mast cells), cell products, molecules with immunosuppressive potential and immunotherapy.