Journal francais d'ophtalmologie

[Treatment of superficial herpes simplex keratitis with vidarabine (Vira A): multicenter study of 100 cases].

PMID 2229899


The efficacy of 3% Ara-A ophthalmic ointment (Vira A) has been evaluated on 100 epithelial herpetic keratitis; the poor intra-ocular penetration of Ara-A explains the exclusion of stromal keratitis and kerato-unveitis. Patients were treated 5 times a day until complete epithelial healing of ulcers, then twice a day during 7 days. Healing was obtained within 10.6 days for 87% of the patients, who have been treated by Ara-A at first (n = 77) or after failure of IDU or of IDC (n = 23). The healing rate was higher for the 52 first ocular episodes (92%) than for the 48 recurrences (81%); it decreases to 77% for recurrences after failure of IDU or IDC. Geographic ulcers heal in 76% of cases only. Their length has no influence on their healing. The longest healing time, 10.6 days, can be explained by the long period of time before beginning to apply Ara-A, 12.8 days: significative correlation between both periods of time is highlighted and shows the advantage of an early treatment. The need for a local corticotherapy (n = 8) does not hinder healing in 15.5 days. Two weeks after discontinuation of the treatment, 3 patients presented a relapse, sensitive to a 2nd Ara-A course; a maintenance treatment, superior to 7 days, is necessary. Tolerance to Vira A ointment is good. Indications of Ara-A during ocular herpes are superficial keratitis, especially those resistant to IDU or, from experimental data, to ACV, and their prevention by a possible long term treatment.

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