JOURNAL ARTICLE
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Efficacy of interferon-alpha for the treatment of Kaposi's sarcoma herpesvirus-associated uveitis.

PURPOSE: To report cases of uveitis that are associated with human herpesvirus-8 (HHV-8) and the impact of interferon-alpha therapy on their visual outcome.

DESIGN: Interventional case reports.

METHODS: Extensive examination was performed in patients with chronic and severe uveitis to exclude a viral cause that requires specific therapy. After histopathologic, molecular, and/or serologic confirmation of HHV-8 uveitis, interferon-alpha2a therapy (3 millions IU/d, 3 days per week, subcutaneously) was initiated.

RESULTS: Two patients of Mediterranean origin were included. HHV-8 serologic result was positive in both cases. Histopathologic examination of conjunctival biopsy specimens confirmed Kaposi's sarcoma in the second case, and quantitative polymerase chain reaction identified HHV-8 DNA in the biopsy specimen. Disease was controlled by interferon-alpha2a in both cases, but maintenance therapy was mandatory to prevent relapses.

CONCLUSION: HHV-8-associated uveitis is a rare condition in immunocompetent hosts. Severe and chronic conditions may require antiviral and immunomodulatory therapies. Interferon alpha seems to be a good candidate and may be proposed in these cases.

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