Br J Ophthalmol 91:1085-1086 doi:10.1136/bjo.2006.106930
  • Letter

Interferon alpha eye drops: treatment of atypical lymphoid hyperplasia with secondary alopecia

  1. P T Finger,
  2. D Reichstein
  1. From The New York Eye Cancer Centre, The New York Eye and Ear Infirmary, New York City, New York, USA
  1. Correspondence to: Paul T Finger MD, The New York Eye Cancer Centre, 115 East 61st Street, New York City, New York, USA 10021; pfinger{at}
  • Accepted 2 October 2006

A typical lymphoid hyperplasia (ALH) of the conjunctiva is a benign tumour that can induce periorbital oedema and rarely corneal decompensation. Orbital ALH can cause optic nerve compression. While most ALH is localized and treatable by observation; some require local resection, immunosuppression and radiation therapy.1,2 When “observation as treatment” is elected, ALH should be periodically inspected for evidence of malignant transformation.3

Topical chemotherapy has become an increasingly popular alternative in treatment of conjunctival tumours.4 Specifically, interferon-alpha eye drops have been used to treat squamous conjunctival malignancy with limited side effects.5–7 However, with systemic and subcutaneous administration, hair loss has been reported.8,9,10

While ocular side effects such as follicular conjunctivitis and conjunctival hyperaemia have been …