Summary of Neonatal conjunctivitis
In neonatal bacterial conjunctivitis, the baby's eyes are contaminated during passage through the birth canal from a mother infected with either Neisseria gonorrhoeae or Chlamydia trachomatis (most common). Symptoms include mucopurulent discharge, conjunctival hyperemia, edema, and eye discomfort. Erythromycin ointment is applied to the eyes within one hour as prevention against gonococcal ophthalmia, which can cause blindness if left untreated. Viral conjunctivitis in the newborn is usually from adenovirus and enterovirus infection, and is treated with topical antiallergics. Chemical conjunctivitis is the most common overall cause of neonatal conjunctivitis in the first day of life, and is usually caused by the silver nitrate and erythromycin routinely used for all neonates.