Korean J Ophthalmol.  2005 Dec;19(4):302-304. 10.3341/kjo.2005.19.4.302.

A Case of Complete Ophthalmoplegia in Herpes Zoster Ophthalmicus

  • 1Department of Ophthalmology, Pochun CHA University College of Medicine, Pundang CHA Hospital, Sungnam, Korea. eye@cha.ac.kr


To report a case with complete ophthalmoplegia after herpes zoster ophthalmicus. METHODS: A 70-year-old male patient visited a clinic because of vesicular eruptions over the left side of his face with severe pain. Drooping and severe swelling of the left eyelid were present, along with keratitis and uveitis. While the lid swelling and uveitis were improving, external ophthalmoplegia and exophthalmos were discovered. Intramuscular injections of dexamethasone 5 mg were given for 10 days, followed by oral administration of prednisolone at a dosage of 15 mg for two weeks and 10 mg for two weeks. RESULTS: The patient was fully recovered from the complete ophthalmoplegia and exophthalmos six months after the onset of the cutaneous lesion. CONCLUSIONS: Complete ophthalmoplegia is a rare ophthalmic complication of herpes zoster infection. Therefore, an evaluation of extraocular muscle and lid function should be performed during the examination of herpes zoster patients in order to screen for ophthalmoplegia.


Complete ophthalmoplegia; exopthalmos; herpes zoster ophthalmicus

MeSH Terms

Severity of Illness Index
Prednisolone/therapeutic use
Ophthalmoplegia/drug therapy/*etiology
Herpes Zoster Ophthalmicus/*complications/drug therapy
Glucocorticoids/therapeutic use
Follow-Up Studies
Exophthalmos/drug therapy/etiology


  • Fig. 1 (A) Vesicular eruption over the left side of face. (B) Severe proptosis of left eye.

  • Fig. 2 Nine cardinal directions of ocular movement at an early stage of disease. Left lid drooping and limitation of ocular movement in all nine directions of gaze were noted.

  • Fig. 3 Nine cardinal directions of ocular movement at six months after disease onset. Lid drooping and limitation of ocular movement were recovered to normal, except for adduction.

Cited by  2 articles

Herpes Zoster Ophthalmicus Complicated by Hyphema, Glaucoma and External Ophthalmoplegia
Shin Hae Park, Wung Jae Kim, Suk Woo Yang, Man Soo Kim
J Korean Ophthalmol Soc. 2007;48(11):1573-1578.    doi: 10.3341/jkos.2007.48.11.1573.

Ocular Manifestations of Herpes Zoster Ophthalmicus
Yoo-Ri Chung, Yoon-Hee Chang, Dae Hee Kim, Hong Seok Yang
J Korean Ophthalmol Soc. 2010;51(2):164-168.    doi: 10.3341/jkos.2010.51.2.164.


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