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Year : 2022  |  Volume : 2  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 794-795

Wasp sting keratitis: A deceptive masquerader!

Department of Cornea and Refractive Surgery, Aravind Eye Hospital, Tirunelveli, Tamil Nadu, India

Date of Submission21-Mar-2022
Date of Acceptance14-Apr-2022
Date of Web Publication16-Jul-2022

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Aditya Ghorpade
Department of Cornea and Refractive Surgery, Aravind Eye Hospital, S.N. High Road, Tirunelveli Junction, Tirunelveli - 627 001, Tamil Nadu
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijo.IJO_737_22

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Keywords: Bee sting keratitis, viral keratitis, wasp sting keratitis

How to cite this article:
Ghorpade A, Venugopal A, Madkaikar A. Wasp sting keratitis: A deceptive masquerader!. Indian J Ophthalmol Case Rep 2022;2:794-5

How to cite this URL:
Ghorpade A, Venugopal A, Madkaikar A. Wasp sting keratitis: A deceptive masquerader!. Indian J Ophthalmol Case Rep [serial online] 2022 [cited 2022 Aug 14];2:794-5. Available from: https://www.ijoreports.in/text.asp?2022/2/3/794/351210

A 45-years-old male patient came to the hospital with complaints of pain and redness in the right eye since 1 day. He had a history of insect bite while driving a two-wheeler a day ago. Slit-lamp examination showed stromal edema mimicking viral keratitis; however, careful examination revealed a central small area of infiltration [Figure 1]a. Based on the characteristic clinical picture and absence of stinger in the affected cornea, we came to the diagnosis of wasp sting keratitis. Our patient was successfully treated with a tapering dosage of topical steroid dexamethasone 0.1%, showing complete resolution of stromal edema at the end of 2 weeks [Figure 1]b.
Figure 1: (a) Right eye on slit-lamp examination, showing stromal edema with a central small area of infiltration. (b) Complete resolution at the end of 2 weeks

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  Discussion Top

Isolated ocular insect sting injuries are a rare occurrence; however, they have grave consequences ranging from conjunctival chemosis, cataracts, and glaucoma to even optic atrophy and corneal decompensation leading to permanent ocular morbidity.[1],[2] Management can be difficult due to the non-identification of the exact insect culprit. Class Insecta of the phylum Arthropoda contains the superorder Hymenopterida, comprising wasps and bees.[3] Though the literature shows evidence of bee sting keratitis masquerading as viral keratitis,[2] it is rather difficult to come to the diagnosis in the absence of stinger, which is frequent in a case of wasp sting keratitis. Wasp venom contains non-enzymatic polypeptides such as melittin and mastoparan, which can cause a toxic reaction at the site of the sting in the form of corneal infiltrate. Amines such as histamine and tyramine can cause an inflammatory reaction in the form of stromal edema.[4] Though the surgical management in the form of anterior chamber irrigation is documented in the literature,[5] topical corticosteroids form the mainstay of the treatment as in our case. It is important to keep in mind the diagnosis of wasp sting keratitis in the absence of a stinger.

Declaration of patient consent

The authors certify that they have obtained all appropriate patient consent forms. In the form the patient(s) has/have given his/her/their consent for his/her/their images and other clinical information to be reported in the journal. The patients understand that their names and initials will not be published and due efforts will be made to conceal their identity, but anonymity cannot be guaranteed.

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Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.

  References Top

Gürlü V, Erda N. Corneal bee sting-induced endothelial changes. Cornea 2006;25:981-3.  Back to cited text no. 1
Jain V, Shome D, Natarajan S. Corneal bee sting misdiagnosed as viral keratitis. Cornea 2007;26:1277-8.  Back to cited text no. 2
Klopfstein S, Vilhelmsen L, Heraty J, Sharkey M, Ronquist F. The hymenopteran tree of life: Evidence from protein-coding genes and objectively aligned ribosomal data. PLoS One 2013;8:e69344.  Back to cited text no. 3
Nowroozzadeh M, Hamid A, Bolkheir A, Shirvani M, Maalhagh M. Corneal wasp sting: A case report and review of literature. J Curr Ophthalmol 2019;31:95-7.  Back to cited text no. 4
Muto T, Machida S. Wasp sting of the cornea. Int Med Case Rep J 2018;11:283-6.  Back to cited text no. 5


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