RESEARCH SUPPORT, NON-U.S. GOV'T
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Course, complications, and outcome of juvenile arthritis-related uveitis.

PURPOSE: To describe the clinical features of uveitis in patients with juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA).

METHODS: Retrospective chart review of a subset of 1,081 consecutive JIA patients who were younger than 18 years of age and had uveitis, with a minimum of 1-year follow-up at a single center.

RESULTS: One hundred forty-two patients (13.1%) developed uveitis after a mean follow-up of 6.3 years (range, 0.10-23.2). Uveitis types were chronic anterior (97/142, 68.3%), acute anterior (23/142, 16.2%), recurrent anterior (17/142, 12%), and panuveitis (5/142, 3.5%). Uveitic complications were observed in 37.3% of cases (53/142) and 32.5% of eyes (74/228). When we compared uveitic eyes with complications to uveitic eyes without complications, we found the following significant differences: time interval from diagnosis of JIA to diagnosis of uveitis was shorter (mean, 1.3 years vs. 2.2 years; p = 0.003) and use of oral prednisone was greater (59.1% vs 15.6%; p < 0.0001) in the eyes with complications. Twenty-one children (21/142, 14.8%) with uveitis underwent a total of 62 ocular surgeries. Good visual acuity (20/40 or better) was found in 90.8% of eyes (159/175) and in both eyes of 87% of cases (94/108), impaired visual acuity in 6 eyes of 4 cases (6/175, 3.4%), and blindness in 10 eyes of 10 cases (10/175, 5.7%). Only 2 patients had reduced visual acuity in both eyes. Surgery was the single most important risk factor for reduced visual acuity at the last follow-up (p = 0.0086).

CONCLUSIONS: Most uveitic eyes with JIA achieved good visual outcome despite uveitic complications.

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