Management of optic neuritis

Dr. R. P. Centre for Ophthalmic Sciences, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India.
Indian Journal of Ophthalmology (Impact Factor: 0.9). 01/1976; 59(2):117-22. DOI: 10.4103/0301-4738.77020
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Optic neuritis is an inflammatory condition of the optic nerve characterized by a sudden onset of unilateral visual loss, usually affecting young females. Demyelination associated with multiple sclerosis (MS) is the most common cause in regions where MS is prevalent; while in other places, there are a substantial proportion of cases where infective or autoimmune causes are seen. Optic Neuritis Treatment Trial (ONTT) was the first major study that provided information on the natural history, role of steroids in treatment and risk of development of MS. Subsequently, numerous clinical trials have evaluated different modalities of management of optic neuritis and MS. The Controlled High-Risk Subjects Avonex Multiple Sclerosis Prevention Study (CHAMPS); the Prevention of Relapses and Disability by Interferon β-1a Subcutaneously in Multiple Sclerosis (PRISMS) Trial; and, most recently, the Betaferon in Newly Emerging Multiple Sclerosis for Initial Treatment (BENEFIT) Study have provided large amount of information on the natural history of optic neuritis and management options available. However, due to the low prevalence of MS reported in Asian studies, high cost of therapy and indefinite time period of treatment, it may not be cost effective to start interferon therapy in most cases.

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    • "While post infectious optic neuritis is more common in children, it can also be found in adults. It is usually seen one to three weeks after a symptomatic infective prodrome.3-5 The objective of presenting this case report is to increase awareness of the doctors and patients on post infectious optic neuritis, which is rare, but a reversible cause of vision loss if diagnosed and treated promptly. "
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    ABSTRACT: Encephalitis has been included in the causes of optic neuritis, but post encephalitic optic neuritis has been rarely reported. Majority of the cases of optic neuritis are either idiopathic or associated with multiple sclerosis, especially in western countries. This is very important in the Asian population where the incidence and prevalence of multiple sclerosis is not as high as in the Western countries. Although post infectious optic neuritis is more common in children, it can also be found in adults and is usually seen one to three weeks after a symptomatic infective prodrome. Here, we present a case of a 48 year-old-male who developed optic neuritis following viral encephalitis. His first presentation was with severe headache of two weeks duration. Viral encephalitis was diagnosed and treated. The patient presented again three weeks later with right eye pain and other features typical of optic neuritis. Corticosteroid therapy facilitated prompt recovery. Optic neuritis is an uncommon manifestation of encephalitis. It is important that both doctors and patients remain aware of post infectious cause of optic neuritis, which would enable a timely diagnosis and treatment of this reversible cause of vision loss.
    Pakistan Journal of Medical Sciences Online 05/2013; 29(3):859-62. DOI:10.12669/pjms.293.3475 · 0.23 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The online version of this article, along with updated information and services, is located on
    Neurology 07/2000; 54(11):2039-44. DOI:10.1212/WNL.54.11.2039 · 8.29 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The aim of this review is to summarize the latest information about optic neuritis, its differential diagnosis and management. Optic Neuritis (ON) is defined as inflammation of the optic nerve, which is mostly idiopathic. However it can be associated with variable causes (demyelinating lesions, autoimmune disorders, infectious and inflammatory conditions). Out of these, multiple sclerosis (MS) is the most common cause of demyelinating ON. ON occurs due to inflammatory processes which lead to activation of T-cells that can cross the blood brain barrier and cause hypersensitivity reaction to neuronal structures. For unknown reasons, ON mostly occurs in adult women and people who live in high latitude. The clinical diagnosis of ON consists of the classic triad of visual loss, periocular pain and dyschromatopsia which requires careful ophthalmic, neurologic and systemic examinations to distinguish between typical and atypical ON. ON in neuromyelitis optica (NMO) is initially misdiagnosed as ON in MS or other conditions such as Anterior Ischemic Optic Neuropathy (AION) and Leber's disease. Therefore, differential diagnosis is necessary to make a proper treatment plan. According to Optic Neuritis Treatment Trial (ONTT) the first line of treatment is intravenous methylprednisolone with faster recovery and less chance of recurrence of ON and conversion to MS. However oral prednisolone alone is contraindicated due to increased risk of a second episode. Controlled High-Risk Subjects Avonex(®) Multiple Sclerosis Prevention Study "CHAMPS", Betaferon in Newly Emerging Multiple Sclerosis for Initial Treatment "BENEFIT" and Early Treatment of MS study "ETOMS" have reported that treatment with interferon β-1a,b results in reduced risk of MS and MRI characteristics of ON. Contrast sensitivity, color vision and visual field are the parameters which remain impaired mostly even after good recovery of visual acuity.
    The Open Ophthalmology Journal 07/2012; 6(1):65-72. DOI:10.2174/1874364101206010065
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