If you think more allergy patients are landing in your chair every year, you’re absolutely correct. The prevalence of allergy is rising worldwide to near epidemic proportions and carries a significant burden for both the individual patient as well as healthcare systems globally.
With Earth’s climate change, both higher temperature and carbon dioxide levels have been inducing vigorous amounts of allergen production from multiple plant and tree species blooming faster than expected for at least the past 160 years.
How often do you ask a child in the exam chair if her eyes were ever itchy or watery? When I started to ask this question to every patient in my pediatric population, it was quite evident that there was an undiscovered gold mine in my anterior segment practice. Allergies in the pediatric population are trending upward in a startling and truly dangerous manner.
The advent of spring yields the annual pilgrimage of patients into our offices complaining of the itchy, watery eyes of allergy. As any eyecare practitioner can attest, ocular allergy is one of the most common presentations to an eyecare practice.