Welcome to the Ophthalmology Journal News page! This page will showcase the latest news from the world of Ophthalmology, as published by The British Journal of Ophthalmology (BMJ).
For the British Ophthalmology Journal Archives, please visit http://bjo.bmj.com/ .
These news items are mainly specific study results that are relevant to the layman.
We have also added another news page with more ‘general’ Opthalmogy news here: Opthamologist News.
Furthermore, we have added a page with general news articles about Eye Health here: Eye Problems Articles , which is a good read for both patients and Ophthalmologists alike.
Ophthalmology Journal News:
To identify the retinal vascular pathologies in patients with Alzheimer’s type dementia (ATD) through optical coherence tomography angiography (OCTA) imaging.
Our study included 26 patients in the patient group, and age-matched and sex-matched 26 subjects in the control group. A detailed ophthalmological and neurological examination was performed for all subjects included in the study. The retinal, choroidal vascular structures and choroidal thickness (CT) of all subjects were analysed in a detailed way with a commercial spectral domain OCTA. Moreover, all participants underwent detailed neurological examination including Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE) test to evaluate cognitive function.
In the group of patients with ATD, the MMSE score was significantly lower than that of the control group (p<0.001). The retinal vascular density was significantly lower than that of the control group in all zones (p<0.05). Foveal avascular zone (FAZ) was significantly enlarged compared with the control group (p=0.001). CT was significantly lower in the group of patients with ATD (p<0.001). Outer retinal and choroidal flow rates were lower in the group of patients with ATD, while the difference was not significant (p>0.05). Furthermore, significant correlation was found between the MMSE and all vascular density parameters, CT parameter and FAZ tested with OCTA imaging (p<0.05).
In patients with ATD, retinal and choroidal vascular pathologies detected through OCTA imaging can be used as a new biomarker in the early diagnosis of the disease, follow-up of its progression and in investigating the efficacy of the drugs.
Retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) is a vasoproliferative eye disease in preterm infants. Based on its phenotypic similarities with familial exudative vitreo retinopathy (FEVR), the present study was conducted to screen the Norrin signalling pathway genes (already been implicated in FEVR) for understanding their involvement among Indian patients with ROP.
The study cohort consisted of patients with ROP (n=246) and controls (n=300) that included full term (n=110) and preterm babies devoid of ROP (n=190). Screening of the NDP, FZD4, TSPAN12 genes were accomplished by resequencing the entire coding and untranslated regions (UTR). The genotype data of the patients with ROP were analysed in the background of their clinical manifestations and further analysed in conjunction with other available data on these genes worldwide.
Two novel variants in intron 1 (IVS1 +16A>G) and 3'UTR (c.5 22T>C) along with a previously reported change in the 5'UTR (c.395_409del14bp) were observed in the NDP gene in three patients with ROP. Screening of the FZD4 revealed four heterozygous variants, p.(Pro33Ser), p.(Pro168Ser), p.(Ile192Ile) and p.(Ile360Val), a compound heterozygous (p.(Pro33Ser)/p.(Pro168Ser)) and a 3'UTR (c*G>T) variants in the study cohort. Variants p.(Pro33Ser) and p.(Pro168Ser) were found to be significantly associated with ROP. A heterozygous variant p.(Leu119Arg) in TSPAN12 gene was observed in a patient with threshold ROP. However, a formal genotype–phenotype correlation could not be established due to the low frequencies of the variant alleles in these genes.
This is a first study that revealed association of few variants in Norrin signalling genes among Indian patients with ROP that warrants further detailed investigation worldwide.
To report the clinical profile and role of perioperative adjunctive measures to reduce the risk of recurrence in Pythium insidiosum keratitis.
Retrospective analysis of 10 eyes of 10 patients with P. insidiosum keratitis. Diagnosis was confirmed by PCR DNA sequencing.
7out of 10 patients were from urban locales, and none had any obvious history of injury with vegetative matter and were being treated for fungal keratitis. 6 eyes presented with central full thickness infiltrates with subepithelial and superficial stromal infiltrates radiating in a reticular pattern. Corneal scraping in all eyes revealed sparsely septate fungal-like filaments on potassium hydroxide/Calcofluor. All eyes underwent the first therapeutic penetrating keratoplasty (TPK) based on worsening or non-responsiveness of clinical features to the antifungal regimen. Recurrence was noted in 7 out of 10 eyes of which 2 eyes underwent evisceration. Of the six eyes that underwent cryotherapy following confirmation of microbiological diagnosis of Pythium (along with primary TPK-1, with re-TPK-5), only one eye had a recurrence and had to be eviscerated. Of the two eyes that did not undergo cryotherapy during re-TPK, following microbiological diagnosis, one eye had a recurrence and had to be eviscerated. In two eyes with adjoining scleritis, the host bed was swabbed using absolute alcohol of which one eye was salvaged.
This series highlights the need to be aware of this entity in the management of refractory fungal keratitis. It also brings to fore the adjunctive measures that could have a beneficial role in the management of pythium keratitis.
Fixational saccades are miniature eye movements that constantly change the gaze during attempted visual fixation. Visually guided saccades and fixational saccades represent an oculomotor continuum and are produced by common neural machinery. Patients with strabismus have disconjugate binocular horizontal saccades. We examined the stability and variability of eye position during fixation in patients with strabismus and correlated the severity of fixational instability with strabismus angle and binocular vision.
Eye movements were measured in 13 patients with strabismus and 16 controls during fixation and visually guided saccades under monocular viewing conditions. Fixational saccades and intersaccadic drifts were analysed in the viewing and non-viewing eye of patients with strabismus and controls.
We found an increase in fixational instability in patients with strabismus compared with controls. We also found an increase in the disconjugacy of fixational saccades and intrasaccadic ocular drift in patients with strabismus compared with controls. The disconjugacy was worse in patients with large-angle strabismus and absent stereopsis. There was an increase in eye position variance during drifts in patients with strabismus. Our findings suggest that both fixational saccades and intersaccadic drifts are abnormal and likely contribute to the fixational instability in patients with strabismus.
Fixational instability could be a useful tool for mass screenings of children to diagnose strabismus in the absence of amblyopia and latent nystagmus. The increased disconjugacy of fixational eye movements and visually guided saccades in patients with strabismus reflects the disruption of the fine-tuning of the motor and visual systems responsible for achieving binocular fusion in these patients.
Thyroid eye disease (TED) is an autoimmune condition with an unpredictable course that may lead to permanent facial disfigurement. Eyelid retraction is one of the most common findings, and frequently demands attention due to ocular exposure and impaired cosmesis. Surgical treatment remains the most effective option, but there is a role for temporary corrections during the active phase of the disease, as well as in patients who are poor surgical candidates. The aim of this review is to describe the non-surgical modalities currently available for treatment of eyelid malposition in TED. The authors have focused on the use of hyaluronic acid, triamcinolone injections and botulinum toxin type A as non-surgical treatment alternatives, paying special attention to dosing, technique, efficacy and duration of effect. Non-surgical treatment modalities may represent viable in cases where surgical correction is not an option. Although temporary, these modalities appear to be beneficial for ocular exposure remediation, improving quality of life and broadening our therapeutic arsenal.
To assess the burden of vision loss due to eye disease in China between 1990 and 2015, and to predict the burden in 2020.
Data from the GBD 2015 (Global Burden of Diseases, Injuries, and Risk Factors Study 2015) were used. The main outcome measures were prevalence and years lived with disability (YLDs) for vision loss due to cataract, glaucoma, macular degeneration, other vision loss, refraction and accommodation disorders and trachoma.
Prevalence for eye diseases increased steadily from 1990 to 2015, and will increase until 2020. From 1990 to 2015, the most common eye disorder was refraction and accommodation disorders. From 1990 to 2015, the vision loss burden due to eye disease decreased for those aged 0–14 years, and increased for those aged 15 years and above, with the most notable increases occurring among those aged 50 years and above. China ranked 10th when comparing YLDs for vision loss due to eye disease with the other members of the G20 (Group of Twenty, an international forum for the governments from 20 major economies) . Age-standardised YLD rates for vision loss due to eye disease declined in all 19 countries, except for China. The burden from vision loss due to eye disease ranked 12th and 11th among all causes of health loss in China in 1990 and 2015, respectively.
Alone among major economies, China has experienced an increase in the burden of age-standardised vision loss from eye disease over the last two decades. In the future, China may expect a growing burden of vision loss due to population growth and ageing.
To identify late outcomes of gold weights (GWs) and platinum chains (PCs) for upper eyelid loading in the management of lagophthalmos.
A retrospective case series of upper eyelid GWs and PCs at a single centre over a 10-year period (2004–2013). Two independent, blinded assessors graded standard photographs for any weight-related morbidity (poor upper eyelid contour, weight prominence and migration).
Primary upper eyelid loading (high-tarsal technique) was performed in 154 eyelids of 136 patients (facial nerve palsy, n=99; non-paralytic, n=37). A total of 127 eyelids of 110 patients had primary GW insertion. Of these, 40.9% (52/127) had revision surgery: exchange of GW for PC (58%), GW repositioning (25%) and removal of GW (17%). Only 22.2% (6/27 eyelids) with primary PCs required revision surgery. In those not requiring revision surgery, photograph grading showed that both GWs and PCs had weight-related morbidity at late follow-up (median=37.5 months, range 12–110 vs median=33.5 month, range 15–106). GWs had significantly higher rate of weight prominence (p=0.001) and migration (p<0.001) compared with PCs. All PC revisions required one procedure only compared with 10% of GWs revisions requiring two or more procedures. Incidence of gold allergy was 7% (8/110 patients). There was no association between the choice of weight material, physical weight or suture material and eyelid morbidities.
GWs were found to be associated with higher complications and twice more likely to require long-term revision surgery compared with PCs. Despite weight fixation at a high-tarsal location, prominence of PCs can still occur.
High myopia (≤–6 D) usually has its onset before 10 years of age and can lead to blinding complications later in life. We examined whether differences in myopia prevalences in socioeconomic risk groups could be explained by differences in lifestyle factors.
A total of 5711 six-year-old children participating in the prospective population-based birth cohort study Generation R underwent a stepwise ophthalmic examination, which included visual acuity and objective cycloplegic refraction to identify children with myopia (≤–0.5D). Daily activities, ethnicity, factors representing family socioeconomic status and housing were ascertained by questionnaire. Risk assessments of myopia and mediation analyses were performed using logistic regression; attenuation of risks was calculated by bootstrapping.
Prevalence of myopia was 2.4% (n=137). Myopic children spent more time indoors and less outdoors than non-myopic children (p<0.01), had lower vitamin D (p=0.01), had a higher body mass index and participated less in sports (p=0.03). Children of non-European descent (OR 2.60; 95% CI 1.84 to 3.68), low maternal education (OR 2.27; 95% CI 1.57 to 3.28) and low family income (OR 2.62; 95% CI 1.8 to 3.74) were more often myopic. Lifestyle factors explained the majority of the increased risk for ethnicity (82%; 95% CI 55 to 120), maternal education (69%; 95% CI 45 to 109) and family socioeconomic status (71%; 95% CI 46 to 104).
This study found environmental factors to be strong risk factors for myopia already at the age of 6 years. The myopia prevalence differences in socioeconomic groups were greatly determined by differences in distribution of these environmental risk factors, highlighting the importance of lifestyle adjustments in young children developing myopia.
To study the tear cytokine and the conjunctival and oral mucosal marker profile in chronic ocular Stevens-Johnson syndrome (SJS) and their alteration following mucous membrane grafting (MMG) for lid margin keratinisation (LMK).
In a 1-year prospective study, SJS cases (n=25) and age-matched/sex-matched healthy controls (n=25) were recruited. Tear specimen (Schirmer’s strip), conjunctival and oral mucosal imprints were collected from controls and SJS cases pre-MMG and post-MMG (at first follow-up, n=17). Tear cytokines were profiled using 27-bioplex array. Transforming growth factor-beta (TGF-β)-mediated extracellular matrix changes in conjunctival and oral mucosal cells were analysed by gene expression studies. 30
Tear cytokine profiling of chronic SJS cases at pre-MMG stage revealed significant upregulation of cytokines granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF), interleukin (IL)-8, IL-1β, monocyte chemoattractant protein-1, IL-15, IL-2, IL-17A and basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF) with downregulation of IP-10 (interferon gamma-induced protein 10), tumour necrosis factor-α, interferon-, IL-10, vascular endothelial growth factor, regulated upon activation normal T-cell expressed and secreted (RANTES), IL-7, IL-12p70 and IL-13, with maximal increase in GM-CSF and maximal downregulation of IP-10, respectively. Of these, IL-2, IL-15, bFGF and IL-17A showed significant correlation with disease severity, pre-MMG. Conjunctival cells pre-MMG showed increase in TGF-β1, TGF-βRII, connective tissue growth factor and collagen-III gene expression by 10, 67, 173 and 184 folds, respectively, which dropped to 1.3, 11, 13.5 and 19 folds correspondingly, post-MMG. However, their expressions in oral mucosa were negligible.
A proinflammatory, profibrotic, antiapoptotic ocular surface milieu characterises chronic ocular SJS. IP-10, an antifibrotic cytokine was noted to be maximally downregulated, unlike in other forms of chronic dry eye disease. The alterations in the ocular surface are seen to reverse largely with MMG for LMK.
Chemotherapy is increasingly used as primary treatment for group D retinoblastoma, whereas primary enucleation is considered to have a diminishing role. This study aimed to compare the management course, including number of examinations under anaesthesia (EUAs), of group D patients treated by enucleation versus chemotherapy.
A retrospective analysis of 92 group D patients, of which 40 (37 unilateral) underwent primary enucleation and 52 (17 unilateral) were treated with intravenous chemotherapy. Number of EUAs was compared between the treatment groups with respect to the whole cohort, using univariate and multivariate analysis, and to unilateral cases only.
Patients were followed up for a median of 61 months (mean: 66, range: 14–156), in which time primary enucleated patients had on average seven EUAs and chemotherapy-treated patients 21 EUAs (p<0.001). Chemotherapy, young age, bilateral disease, multifocal tumours, familial and germline retinoblastoma were found on univariate analysis to correlate with increased number of EUAs (p≤0.019). On multivariate analysis, however, only treatment type and presentation age were found significant (p≤0.001). On subanalysis of the unilateral cases, patients undergoing primary enucleation had in average seven EUAs, as compared with 16 in the chemotherapy group (p<0.001). Of the 55 unilateral-presenting patients, a new tumour developed in the fellow eye only in a single familial case.
Group D patients’ families should be counselled regarding the significant difference in number of EUAs following primary enucleation versus chemotherapy when deciding on a treatment strategy. In this regard, primary enucleation would be most beneficial for older patients with unilateral disease.
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