Article Text


Ophthalmic complications with disseminated intravascular coagulation.
  1. R. B. Patchett,
  2. W. B. Wilson and
  3. P. P. Ellis
  1. Department of Ophthalmology, University of Colorado School of Medicine, Denver.


    Massive lid oedema, ecchymosis, proptosis with a total restriction of extraocular movement, markedly raised intraocular pressure, and occlusion of the central retinal artery developed acutely in the right eye of a 26-year-old woman with a past history of disseminated intravascular coagulation. She had been admitted to hospital for symptoms of abdominal pain and bleeding from multiple sites a few hours earlier. Five days previously she had some proptosis of the other eye and had been treated with antibiotics for suspected orbital cellulitis at another hospital. The oedema and proptosis resolved on high-dose intravenous corticosteroid therapy. Despite attempts to relieve the orbital oedema and raised intraocular pressure with a lateral canthotomy and antiglaucoma medications, the patient lost all perception of light in the right eye and has subsequently developed an optic nerve atrophy.

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