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The risk of complications of uveitis in a district hospital cohort
  1. R Maini1,
  2. J O’Sullivan1,2,
  3. A Reddy1,
  4. S Watson1,3,
  5. C Edelsten1,3
  1. 1Ipswich Hospital, Suffolk, UK
  2. 2Frimley Park Hospital NHS Trust, Frimley, Surrey, UK
  3. 3Prince Charles Eye Unit, Windsor, UK
  1. Correspondence to: Clive Edelsten Ophthalmology Department, Ipswich Hospital, Ipswich IP4 5PD, UK;


Aims: To establish the frequency and risk factors for visual loss in a primary referral cohort of hospital patients with uveitis.

Methods: 561 consecutive uveitis patients attending three district hospitals were recruited and the acuity at the end of the study period recorded. A retrospective case-control study of risk factors for visual loss (permanent loss of acuity <6/9) was performed. Risk factors examined included type of uveitis, age at onset of uveitis, race, type of systemic inflammatory disease, length of follow up, and treatment variables.

Results: Visual loss of at least 6/12 in one eye was found in 111 patients (19.9%). Only four patients (0.7%) suffered severe bilateral visual loss (6/36 or less). Visual loss was associated with age at onset >60 years (odds ratio 3.9, 95% confidence interval (CI) 2.2 to 7.0, long follow up 2.0 (1.2 to 3.3) and a history of cataract surgery 3.9 (2.1 to 7.2). It was less likely in patients with acute anterior uveitis 0.2 (0.1 to 0.3).

Conclusion: The frequency of visual loss associated with uveitis in a district hospital cohort is less than that found in referral centres and levels of legal blindness are low. Although acute anterior uveitis has a low frequency of visual loss it contributes significantly to the total burden. The ocular co-morbidity of the elderly may contribute to the increased visual loss of late onset uveitis.

  • uveitis
  • age
  • visual loss
  • epidemiology

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