RESEARCH SUPPORT, U.S. GOV'T, NON-P.H.S.
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Ocular Inflammation in the Setting of Concomitant Systemic Autoimmune Conditions in an Older Male Population.

Cornea 2015 July
PURPOSE: This retrospective cross-sectional study was designed to investigate the frequency and types of inflammatory ocular manifestations of specific systemic autoimmune diseases in a South Florida Veterans Affairs Hospital population.

METHODS: Demographic and medical diagnosis information was extracted from the Veterans Administration database for 1225 patients. These patients were seen in Miami and Broward Veterans Affairs hospitals between April 18, 2008, and April 17, 2013, and were diagnosed with at least 1 of the following: systemic lupus erythematosus, sarcoid, rheumatoid arthritis, polymyalgia rheumatica, Takayasu arteritis, giant cell arteritis, Kawasaki disease, polyarteritis nodosa, Buerger disease, Henoch-Schonlein purpura, Behcet syndrome, granulomatosis with polyangiitis, other polyarteritis nodosa-associated vasculitides, or arteritis not otherwise specified.

RESULTS: Of 1225 patients, 618 were seen in the VA eye clinic and 25 were diagnosed with concomitant inflammatory ocular conditions. Uveitis was the most common, and included 8 cases of anterior, 1 anterior-intermediate, 1 intermediate, 2 panuveitis, and 3 unspecified. Other manifestations included 7 cases of keratitis and 2 each of scleritis, episcleritis, and acute ischemic optic neuropathy. The overall frequency of inflammatory ocular disease was 2%. The diseases associated with the highest frequency of ocular involvement were granulomatosis with polyangiitis (1/8), sarcoid (9/198), giant cell arteritis (2/68), and rheumatoid arthritis (11/576). Of these 25 patients, 9 were diagnosed with eye disease before systemic disease.

CONCLUSIONS: In this population, ocular manifestations were rarely the presenting feature of systemic disease, but autoimmune disorders are an important underlying cause of inflammatory eye disease that should be considered on first evaluation, even in this "nontraditional," predominantly male, autoimmune disease population.

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