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Vision loss in giant cell arteritis
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  • Published on:
    Preventing vision loss in giant cell arteritis
    • Fabio Bandini, Neurologist Department of Neurology, ASL 3 Genovese

    In their review on vision loss in giant cell arteritis (GCA), the authors point out that anterior arteritic ischaemic optic neuropathy is the most common ophthalmic manifestation of the disease, followed by central retinal artery or cilioretinal artery occlusion and posterior ischaemic optic neuropathy. We do agree that these ocular findings must be quickly diagnosed to prevent devastating visual consequences. When diagnosed, however, not much can be done to restore the visual function. We rather believe that more emphasis should be given to other ophthalmic features that can occur as the initial manifestation of GCA and, when unrecognized, can result in an unfortunate late diagnosis. These include amaurosis fugax, uveitis, anterior or posterior scleritis and ocular pain. Awareness of these uncommon ocular conditions as the presenting signs of impending visual loss in GCA should prompt clinicians to consider this diagnosis in any elderly patient presenting with ophthalmic manifestations other than permanent visual loss, especially if other signs of GCA are detectable.

    Conflict of Interest:
    None declared.

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