34-year-old suffers corneal necrosis following vitamin A deficiency

BMJ Case Reports authors have described their treatment of a severely malnourished patient with a history of alcoholism

Pixabay/Steve Buissinne
BMJ Case Reports authors have described their treatment of a patient who developed bilateral liquefactive corneal necrosis as a result of vitamin A deficiency.

The 34-year-old man presented to hospital following a week of vision loss and whitish opacity in both eyes.

The patient, who had a history of chronic alcohol abuse, was found to be suffering from essential vitamin deficiencies, including vitamins A and B.

His visual acuity was limited to light perception in both eyes and slit lamp biomicroscopy revealed total corneal melt.

The patient was treated with intravenous multivitamin supplementation for five days, and subsequently received oral vitamin supplements. He received corneal transplantations in both eyes.

On the first day following surgery, the patient’s visual acuity was 6/120 in both eyes.

An in-person follow up was not possible because of the pandemic, but a telemedicine consultation revealed that the patient was able to perform his routine work independently.