Sunday, 10 October 2010

The Conjunctiva

Author : Nik Abdul Muhaimin S.Ked, Currently practicing as Co-Assistant in Ophthalmology Department, University of Andalas School of Medicine.

Updated : Oct 10 2010

Conjunctiva is a clear mucous membrane consisting of cells and underlying basement membrane that covers the sclera (white part of the eye) and lines the inside of the eyelids. It is composed of rare stratified columnar epithelium. The word come from Latin, Conjunctivus meaning bind together. In Terminologia Anatomica also known as Tunica Conjunctiva. 1,2

The conjunctiva firmly adheres to the sclera at the limbus, where it meets the cornea. The accessory lacrimal glands (
Krause and Wolfring), along with goblet cells, are contained within the conjunctiva and are responsible for keeping the eye lubricated. Conjunctiva blood supply from lacrima arteries and anterior ciliary artery. Conjunctiva innervated by lacrimal nerves which is the smallest of the three branches of the ophthalmic nerve of the trigeminal nerve. 2,3,4

It helps lubricate the eye by producing mucus and tears, although a smaller volume of tears than the lacrimal gland. It also contributes to immune surveillance and helps to prevent the entrance of microbes into the eye.

The conjunctiva is typically divided into three parts:

The image of blood supply of the eye :

Click the picture for better view

The image of anterior ciliary artery : 6


  1. Stedman's electronic medical dictionary. Version 6.0. Baltimore : Lappincott Wiliams & Wilkins ; 2004. Conjunctiva
  2. Conjunctiva [Internet]. 2010 [updated 2010 Sept 26;cited 2010 Oct 10]. Available from :
  3. Silverman, MA. Conjunctivitis [Internet]. 2010 [updated 2010 Apr 27 ; cited 2010 Oct 10]. Available from :
  4. Lacriman nerve [Internet]. 2010 [update 2010 Oct 9 ; cited 2010 Otc 10]. Available from :
  5. The blood supply of the eye (Rand Swenson) [Image on internet]. 2009.Available from :
  6. Anterior ciliary arteriy [Internet]. 2010 [update 2010 Jan 24 ; cited 2010 Oct 10]. Available from :

1 comment:

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