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CME: Seeing through the challenges of ocular allergy: Optimization of diagnosis and treatment strategies

Activity Description / Statement of Need:

In this online, self-learning activity:

Ocular allergy (OA), also known as allergic eye disease, is an ocular surface hypersensitivity disorder resulting from an abnormal immunologic response of the eye to various antigens. It is not a single clinical entity, rather it includes the following conditions with differing hypersensitivity mechanisms, diagnostic criteria, pathogenesis, and management strategies: seasonal allergic conjunctivitis (SAC), perennial allergic conjunctivitis (PAC), vernal keratoconjunctivitis (VKC), atopic keratoconjunctivitis, giant papillary conjunctivitis, and contact dermatoconjunctivitis. OA affects approximately 40% of the global population, with SAC and PAC specifically affecting 15 to 25%. Ocular itch associated with SAC and PAC is the hallmark symptom of the disease. The multifactorial dimensions of OA contribute to economic ramifications in the United States (US) estimated at $2 billion annually in prescriptions, with the costs associated with over-the-counter (OTC) medications projected to be tenfold higher than prescription sales.

Target Audience:

The following HCPs: ophthalmologists, allergists, and general practitioners; physician assistants and nurse practitioners in the aforementioned areas of specialty; and any other clinicians involved or interested in the treatment of ocular allergy.

Commercial Support Disclosure: This program is supported by an educational grant from Alcon Vision.

This activity is free of charge.

Release Date: April 22, 2023 -- Expiration Date: April 22, 2025

Faculty: Benjamin Bert, MD


Faculty introduction, disclosures

Introductory content: defining the context and challenge of ocular allergy

  • Epidemiology
  • Clinical features, presentation, pathophysiology, and allergens 
  • Challenges of diagnosis 

Treatment of ocular allergy

  • Goals of therapy
  • Staging of ocular allergy based on type and severity 
  • Available OTC and prescription treatments 

· The impact of active ingredients on efficacy and patient comfort

· Mechanism of action, adverse effects, and place in therapy of the following agents, taking into account specific disorders (e.g., acute allergic conjunctivitis, SAC, PAC, VKC, etc.):

· Mast-cell stabilizers

· Antihistamines

· Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs

· Dual-action agents

· Roles of corticosteroids and calcineurin inhibitors

· Additional and novel drug delivery systems

· Emerging agents

  • Non-pharmacotherapy
  • Challenges to successful ocular allergy treatment and optimal outcomes 
  • Special populations: pregnancy considerations
  • Patient case(s) 

Summary, conclusions, and best practice recap

Learning Objectives

By the end of the session the participant will be able to:

  • Recall the clinical presentation and optimal strategies for appropriate diagnosis of OA.
  • Summarize challenges to the optimal diagnosis and treatment of OA and strategies for overcoming them.
  • Identify the currently available and emerging pharmacotherapeutic treatment options for the management of OA.
  • Formulate a treatment plan for a patient with an OA.


ACCME Activity #202448523

This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the accreditation requirements and policies of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education through ScientiaCME. ScientiaCME is accredited by the ACCME to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

Credit Designation: ScientiaCME designates this educational activity for a maximum of 1.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™ toward the AMA Physician's Recognition Award. Physicians should only claim credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

ABIM MOC Recognition Statement: Successful completion of this CME activity, which includes participation in the evaluation component, enables the participant to earn up to 1.0 MOC points in the American Board of Internal Medicine's (ABIM) Maintenance of Certification (MOC) program. It is the CME activity provider's responsibility to submit participant completion information to ACCME for the purpose of granting ABIM MOC credit.

ABIM MOC Credit Type: Medical Knowledge

Physicians: For maintenance of certification (MOC) points, you must enter your board certification ID # and birth date correctly.  It is the learner's responsibility to provide this information completely and accurately at the completion of the activity. Without providing it, the learner will NOT receive MOC points for this activity. By providing this data, you acknowledge that it will be shared with ACCME and the applicable certifying board. Please note: Not all activities on this site provide MOC points. If this activity does not specify that it provides MOC points in this section, then it does NOT provide MOC points. This activity provides MOC points only for ABIM.


ScientiaCME is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE) as a provider of continuing pharmacy education. This activity is approved for 1.0 contact hours (0.1 CEUs) of continuing pharmacy education credit. Proof of participation will be posted to your NABP CPE profile within 4 to 6 weeks to participants who have successfully completed the post-test. Participants must participate in the entire presentation and complete the course evaluation to receive continuing pharmacy education credit. ACPE #0574-0000-23-013-H01-P. This is an Knowledge (K)-type activity. 

PharmacistsYou must enter your NABP # and birth date correctly so that proof of participation can be posted to your NABP CPE profile. It is the learner's responsibility to provide this information completely and accurately at the completion of the activity. Without providing it, the learner will NOT receive CPE credit for this activity.

Nurse Practitioners (NPs): The American Academy of Nurse Practitioners accepts AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™ from organizations accredited by the ACCME. ScientiaCME will provide NPs who successfully complete each activity with a certificate of participation indicating that the activity was designated for AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™.

Physician Assistants: The American Academy of Physician Assistants accepts AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™ from organizations accredited by the ACCME.

MOC - The American Board Of Ophthalmology no longer accepts CME for MOC, so no ABO MOC is possible.

Faculty Disclosure and Resolution of COI

As a provider of continuing medical education, it is the policy of ScientiaCME to ensure balance, independence, objectivity, and scientific rigor in all of its educational activities. In accordance with this policy, faculty and educational planners must disclose any significant relationships with commercial interests whose products or devices may be mentioned in faculty presentations, and any relationships with the commercial supporter of the activity. The intent of this disclosure is to provide the intended audience with information on which they can make their own judgments. Additionally, in the event a conflict of interest (COI) does exist, it is the policy of ScientiaCME to ensure that the COI is resolved in order to ensure the integrity of the CME activity. For this CME activity, any COI has been resolved thru content review by ScientiaCME.

Disclosure of Faculty: Benjamin B. Bert, MD, FACS, Assistant Professor, David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, received financial compensation for research from Regeneron and Novartis.

Disclosures of Educational Planners: Charles Turck, PharmD, BCPS, BCCCP, President of ScientiaCME, has no relevant financial disclosures.

Faculty WILL discuss off-label uses.

All relevant financial relationships have been mitigated.

ScientiaCME adheres to the ACCME’s Standards for Integrity and Independence in Accredited Continuing Education. Any individuals in a position to control the content of a CE activity, including faculty, planners, reviewers or others are required to disclose all relevant financial relationships with ineligible entities (commercial interests). All relevant conflicts of interest have been mitigated prior to the commencement of the activity.

Commercial Support Disclosure: This program is supported by an educational grant from Alcon Vision.


  • Read the learning objectives above
  • Take the Pre-Test (optional). Completion of the pre-test will help us evaluate the knowledge gained by participating in this CME activity.
  • View the online activity. You may view this is in more than one session, and may pause or repeat any portion of the presentation if you need to.
  • Minimum participation threshold: Take the post-test. A score of 70% or higher is required to pass and proceed to the activity evaluation.
  • Complete the activity evaluation and CME registration. A CE certificate will be emailed to you immediately.

Cultural/Linguistic Competence & Health Disparities

System Requirements

Windows 7 or above
Internet Explorer 8
*Adobe Acrobat Reader
Mac OS 10.2.8
Safari or Chrome or Firefox
*Adobe Acrobat Reader
Internet Explorer is not supported on the Macintosh

*Required to view Printable PDF Version

Perform Pre-Test (optional)

Please take a few minutes to participate in the optional pre-test. It will help us measure the knowledge gained by participating in this activity.

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