Ocular surface neoplasia masquerading as chronic blepharoconjunctivitis

Esen Karamursel Akpek, Wasee Polcharoen, Roxanne Chan, C. Stephen Foster

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose. To present the clinical characteristics and difficulties in the diagnosis of various ocular surface malignancies mimicking features of chronic blepharoconjunctivitis and to summarize the current therapeutic approach and prognosis of patients. Methods. Six patients with slowly evolving signs of persistent inflammation underwent a conjunctival biopsy after a prolonged course of medical treatment. The medical records of the patients were reviewed. Results. Histopathologic examination of the biopsy specimens revealed intraepithelial squamous neoplasia (one patient), invasive squamous cell carcinoma (one patient), sebaceous carcinoma (two patients), and conjunctival lymphoma (two patients). Conclusion. Although uncommon, ocular surface malignancies may involve the conjunctiva diffusely and present as chronic conjunctivitis. A high index of suspicion and an early histopathologic examination are essential to not delay diagnosis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)282-288
Number of pages7
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 1 1999
Externally publishedYes


  • Cancer
  • Conjunctiva
  • Masquerade syndrome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology


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