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Overwhelming orbital cellulitis in a neonate
  1. Venu Kulkarni1,
  2. Venkataseshan Sundaram1 and
  3. Tadepalli Haripriya Sameeksha2
  1. 1Paediatrics, Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh, Chandigarh, India
  2. 2Ophthalmology, Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh, Chandigarh, India
  1. Correspondence to Dr Venkataseshan Sundaram; venkatpgi{at}


This article discusses a rare ophthalmic manifestation of neonatal bacterial infection and its management, including surgical drainage. The case discussed is that of a neonate who presented with rapidly progressing ophthalmic symptoms suggestive of orbital cellulitis. The neonate also had extensive intracranial involvement and had spread to contiguous structures causing a temporal lobe abscess. As there was no local injury, a haematogenous spread was strongly considered. With blood culture and pus culture yielding the growth of Staphylococcus aureus, systemic antibiotics and surgical interventions were required to successfully manage the neonate. Through this case report, we emphasise that orbital infections are grave in neonates and may culminate into devastating intracranial complications; hence, it necessitates appropriate medical and surgical interventions right from hospital admission.

  • Ophthalmology
  • Neonatal and paediatric intensive care
  • Meningitis
  • Infectious diseases

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  • Contributors The following authors were responsible for drafting of the text, sourcing and editing of clinical images, investigation results, drawing original diagrams and algorithms, and critical revision for important intellectual content: VK. The following authors gave final approval of the manuscript: VS.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Case reports provide a valuable learning resource for the scientific community and can indicate areas of interest for future research. They should not be used in isolation to guide treatment choices or public health policy.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.