Herpes simplex virus keratitis after laser in situ keratomileusis. Academic Article uri icon


  • PURPOSE: To report two cases of herpes simplex virus (HSV) keratitis after laser in situ keratomileusis (LASIK). METHODS: Interventional small case series. Two patients underwent uneventful LASIK. History of herpes labialis in one patient and herpetic eye disease >10 years prior to intervention in the other patient was reported. Both patients developed stromal herpetic keratitis 6 weeks and 2 years after the procedure, respectively. RESULTS: Treatment consisting of topical steroid drops and topical and systemic antiviral therapy was administered. Recurrences of the herpetic keratitis were seen after tapering of the topical steroids; four and three recurrences were observed, respectively. Final visual acuity was >6/9 in both cases. CONCLUSIONS: Herpetic keratitis after LASIK is an uncommon, possibly under-reported, entity. Even patients without history of herpetic eye disease can present with this complication. Oral antiviral prophylaxis may be appropriate when performing LASIK on patients with a history of ocular or systemic HSV infection.

publication date

  • January 1, 2005