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Limbal and corneal calcification in patients with chronic renal failure.
  1. N Klaassen-Broekema and
  2. O P van Bijsterveld
  1. Utrecht State University, Department of Ophthalmology AZU, The Netherlands.


    In patients with chronic renal failure on regular dialysis treatment, limboconjunctival degenerations and calcifications are commonly observed. In this study three groups of patients were followed over a period of 6 years. The first group consisted of 47 patients with renal failure, the second group of 17 patients with renal failure and hyperparathyroidism not controlled by drugs, and the third group seven patients with primary hyperparathyroidism without renal failure. The aim of this study was to determine the progression of the limboconjunctival changes over time. The hypothesis that an increase in serum calcium and phosphorus concentrations, as a result of tertiary hyperparathyroidism, could possibly add a corneal component to the limbal calcification was also tested. All patients with renal failure (in as much as the degenerative limbal features were not obscured by deposits of lime salts), had a type II white limbus girdle of Vogt. This limbal degeneration was observed in only 45% of controls. In all 47 patients with renal failure conjunctival calcification was observed; 26 of them also had limbal calcification. After 6 years 41 patients had developed limbal calcification. This progression was statistically significant. In 15 out of 17 patients with tertiary hyperparathyroidism a band-shaped keratopathy developed in addition to the limboconjunctival calcification.

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