Return of goblet cells after vitamin A therapy in xerosis of the conjunctiva

William R. Sullivan, James P. McCulley, Claes H. Dohlman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

37 Scopus citations


Vitamin A deficiency was documented in two patients with chronic alcoholism who were seen initially with bacterial corneal ulcers. Both patients demonstrated keratotic changes of the conjunctiva, with the appearance of dry eyes despite normal tear volumes. Absence of goblet cells upon conjunctival biopsy supports the concept that deficiency of conjunctival mucus is important in the ocular pathology of vitamin A deficiency. In one case, treatment with vitamin A restored a normal clinical appearance. We were able to correlate this clinical improvement with a reversal of the histopathologic appearance of the conjunctiva, including the reappearance of conjunctival goblet cells.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)720-725
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican journal of ophthalmology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1973

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology


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