Sudden unilateral visual field loss

Department of Eye and Rheumatology, Dunedin Public Hospital, Dunedin, NewZealand.
Journal of Emergencies Trauma and Shock 09/2009; 2(3):211-2. DOI: 10.4103/0974-2700.55352
Source: PubMed


We report a classical case of branch retinal artery occlusion (BRAO) in the acute setting and review the literature relating to the diagnostic, therapeutic and prognostic facets of this condition. BRAO can cause sudden visual loss and is not an infrequent presentation to emergency medical services. BRAO may indicate predisposing and related conditions capable of significant morbidity and mortality. Although current therapeutic practices in the acute setting are of uncertain benefit, conservative measures may be attempted in the emergency room by a nonophthalmologist with the aim of dislodging the causative embolus. Regardless of the current means of acute management, anitplatelet therapy and cardiovascular risk management remain the mainstay of treatment for BRAO. The potential for life-threatening systemic associations necessities investigation and multidisciplinary input.

7 Reads
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: To report the ocular manifestations of giant cell arteritis using the strict criterion of a positive temporal artery biopsy for diagnosis of giant cell arteritis. In a prospective study from 1973 to 1995, we investigated 170 patients whose diagnosis of giant cell arteritis was confirmed on temporal artery biopsy. At the initial visit, all patients were questioned regarding systemic and ocular signs and symptoms of giant cell arteritis and underwent ophthalmic, erythrocyte sedimentation rate (Westergren), and C-reactive protein evaluations. Any patient with a high index of suspicion of giant cell arteritis was immediately started on systemic corticosteroid therapy and had temporal artery biopsy performed as soon as possible. Eighty-five (50.0%) of the 170 patients with giant cell arteritis proven by temporal artery biopsy presented with ocular involvement. Ocular symptoms in patients with ocular involvement were visual loss of varying severity in 83 (97.7%), amaurosis fugax in 26 (30.6%), diplopia in five (5.9%), and eye pain in seven (8.2%); ocular ischemic lesions consisted of arteritic anterior ischemic optic neuropathy in 69 (81.2%), central retinal artery occlusion in 12 (14.1%), cilioretinal artery occlusion in 12 (of 55 patients with satisfactory fluorescein angiography [21.8%]), posterior ischemic optic neuropathy in six (7.1%), and ocular ischemia in one (1.2%). In almost every patient with giant cell arteritis, fluorescein fundus angiography disclosed occlusive disease of the posterior ciliary arteries. Because giant cell arteritis is a potentially blinding disease and its early diagnosis is the key to preventing blindness, it is important to recognize its various ocular manifestations.
    American Journal of Ophthalmology 05/1998; 125(4):509-20. DOI:10.1016/S0002-9394(99)80192-5 · 3.87 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Central retinal artery occlusion (CRAO) is usually a blinding event, and is not an infrequent presentation to the accident and emergency (A&E) department. The evidence-base in support of current treatment options is weak. This paper reviewed the literature germane to the diagnostic, therapeutic and prognostic aspects of retinal arterial occlusive disease. The visual prognosis associated with CRAO remains poor, and current therapeutic practices are of unproven benefit. The non-ophthalmologist in the A&E department should lie the patient flat and give a stat dose of intravenous acetazolamide in an attempt to improve the retinal perfusion pressure. The management of acute occlusion of the central retinal artery has not changed over the past 30 years, although the potential benefits of superselective intra-arterial fibrinolytic therapy warrant evaluation in a randomised controlled trial. The identification of underlying pathology is an essential component of medical care, and all cases should be followed up by an ophthalmologist because of the possibility of ocular rubeosis.
    Journal of accident & emergency medicine 10/2000; 17(5):324-9. DOI:10.1136/emj.17.5.324
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Occlusions of the retinal arterial and venous circulations are common causes of severe visual decline and can affect all age groups. Acute retinal arterial obstruction is often associated with critical cerebrovascular and cardiovascular disease that may require systemic treatment. Retinal venous obstruction may be the presentation of significant systemic hypertension, diabetes mellitus, and a greater risk for cardiovascular morbidity. Additional metabolic and hematologic abnormalities have been identified in patients with retinal occlusive disease. The authors review recent advances in the study of systemic conditions associated with retinal vascular occlusions and offer guidelines for appropriate medical evaluation of patients with retinal occlusive disease.
    Current Opinion in Ophthalmology 01/2001; 11(6):462-7. DOI:10.1097/00055735-200012000-00013 · 2.50 Impact Factor