Table 2

Published cases of optic neuritis treated with corticosteroid sparing therapy6,9–17

First authorYearAge/sexDiagnosisEye*Time and dose of corticosteroid or other therapyIndication for corticosteroid sparing agentDrug, dose, and duration (if reported)Adverse effectsCorticosteroid dose (final)Initial visual acuityFinal visual acuityComment
F, female; M, male; OD, right eye; OS, left eye; OU, both eyes; IV, intravenous; NLP, no light perception; HM, hand motion; CF, count fingers; LP, light perception.
*Uninvolved eyes are not detailed in this table.
Siatkowski RM200132 FSystemic lupus erythematosusOU6 months of corticosteroid3 relapses on corticosteroidMonthly IV cyclophosphamide for 7 months, no relapses while on therapyUnknownUnknownOD:LP OS:20/15OD:5/200 OS:20/200Patient discontinued cyclophosphamide because she desired to become pregnant.
42 FODUnknownUnknownAzathioprine for 16 months, then monthly IV cyclophosphamideUnknown20 mgOD:20/200OD:20/40
Frohman LP200151 FSystemic lupus erythematosusOU5mg/2.5 mg and hydroxychloroquine 400 mg dailyUnknownMethotrexate 15 mg weeklyUnknown0 mgOD:LP OS:20/70OD:20/20 OS:20/20
Galindo-Rodriguez G199941 FSystemic lupus erythematosusOU100 mg for 2 monthsDisease refractory to corticosteroid and/or oral immunosuppressionCyclophosphamide 0.5–1.0 gm/m2 IV on 2 consecutive days monthly. Mean duration 5 monthsAll patients had side effects: 7 patients with urinary tract infections, 3 patients with upper respiratory infections, 2 patients with herpes zoster infections, 1 patient with pneumonia, 4 patients with oral candidaisis, 5 patients with hair loss, 1 patient with cutaneous abcess.UnknownOD:20/40 OS:HMOD:20/30 OS:20/30Only 3 patients discontinued treatment and this was secondary to nausea and vomiting.
35 FOU100 mg for 4 monthsOD:CF OS:CFOD:20/50 OS:20/100
36 FOU60 mg for 8 months and azathioprine 150 mg for 9 months and cyclophosphamide by mouth for 12 monthsOD:CF OS:CFOD:20/50 OS:20/20
18 FOU60 mg for 24 months and azathioprine 100 mg for 24 months and cyclophosphamide by mouth for 6 monthsOD:NLP OS:CFOD:CF OS:20/200
44 FOU100 mg for 4 months and azathioprine 150 mg for 20 months and cyclophosphamide by mouth for 4 monthsOD:CF OS:CFOD:20/25 OS:20/30
55 FOU100 mg for 2 monthsOD:20/70 OS:20/70OD:20/20 OS:20/20
43 FOU100 mg for 2 monthsOD:CF OS:CFOD:20/60 OS:20/80
17 FOU100 mg for 3 months and azathioprine 100 mg for 2 monthsOD:CF OS:CFOD:20/20 OS:20/25
32 FOU150 mg for 4 monthsOD:HM OS:20/40OD:HM OS:20/60
30 FOU60 mg for 1 monthOD:20/20 OS:20/25OD:20/30 OS:20/40
Rosenbaum JT199732 FSystemic lupus erythematosusOSUnknown doses of corticosteroid and azathioprineUnknownIV cyclophosphamide for 28 monthsUnknownUnknownOD: HMOD: 20/20
56 FODUnknown doseIV cyclophosphamide for 2 monthsOD: LPOD: 20/30
Maust HA200335FSarcoidosisOU20–40 mg daily for 5 monthsInsomnia, anxietyMethotrexate 2.5–10 mg weekly for 30 monthsLeukopenia in one patient0 mgOD:CF OS: 20/400OD:20/50 OS: 20/20
41FOD10–40 mg daily for 2 monthsHyperglycaemiaMethotrexate 2.5–10 mg weekly for 36 months18 mgOD: CFOD: 20/30
47FOU10–80 mg daily for 8 monthsMood swings, insomnia, weight gain, depression, alopeciaMethotrexate 7.5–15 mg weekly for 23 months0 mgOD: HM OS: 20/20OD: NLP OS: 20/25
Bielory L199148 FOrbital pseudotumorOSUnknown dose4 patients with weight gain, 2 patients with uncontrolled hyperglycaemia, 2 patients with hypertensionCyclosporine A 2 mg/kg/day for an average of 16.5 monthsHypercholesterolaemia and hirsutism in unknown number of patientsUnclearOS: 20/400OS: 20/20Weight gain, diabetes and hypertension resolved in all patients after corticosteroid dose was tapered.
38 MSarcoidosisOUOD:20/20 OS: 20/25“Normal acuity”
56 FOUOD:20/200 OS:20/200OD:CF OS:20/400
25 MOUOD:20/40 OS:20/200OD:20/30 OS:20/200
Gelwan MJ198845 FSarcoidosisOUUnknown doseHypertension and diabetes4500 cGy of radiation then azathioprine 800 mg daily for 8 monthsUnknown10 mgOD:20/40 OS:20/100OD:20/25 OS:20/20
32 MOUDiabetes, cushingoid, glaucoma4500 cGy of radiation then azathioprine 200 mg daily for 5 monthsNone10 mg every other dayOD:20/40 OS:NLPOD:20/60 OS:NLPDiabetes and cushingoid features resolved
20 MOUCushingoid4880 cGy of radiation then chlorambucil 6 mg daily for 6 monthsUnknown7.5 mgOD:20/20 OS:20/200OD:20/20 OS:CFPoor compliance
Gressel MG198321 FMixed connective tissue diseaseOU40 mg dailyCushingoidAzathioprine for 7 months, then oral cyclophosphamide 100 mg daily for 5 months then chlorambucil 4 mg dailyHemorrhagic cystitis and leukopenia on cyclophos-phamideUnknownOD:20/40 OS:20/25UnknownRapid progression despite treatment
Purvin A199432 FNeuroretinitisOUUnknown doseInefficacyAzathioprine for 3 yearsUnknownUnknownUnknownOD:20/20 OS:20/80Recurrent attacks suppressed with azathioprine
Kupersmith MJ198844 FAutoimmune optic neuropathyOD100 mg daily for 12 monthsCorticosteroid intolerance or inefficacyChlorambucil 6 mg daily for 6.5 yearsNone“lower”OD: LP OS: 20/20OD: 20/25 OS: 20/20
42 FOU100 mg daily for 4 monthsChlorambucil 6 mg daily for 6.5 yearsNone“lower”OD: NLP OS: LPOD: NLP OS: 20/20
26 FOU100 mg daily for 3 monthsCyclophosphamide 150 mg and Azathioprine 100 mg daily for 5.5 yearsPneumocystis pneumonia“reduced”ODHM OS: HMOD: 20/25 OS: 20/25
26 FOU100 mg daily for 1.5 monthsChlorambucil 6 mg and Azathioprine 75 mg daily for 6.5 yearsHerpetic keratitis“lower”OD: CF OS: 20/300OD: 20/25 OS: 20/300
56 FODUnknown doseAzathioprine 125 mg daily for 6 monthsNone30 mgOD: 20/400 OS: 20/20OD: 20/30 OS: 20/20
47 FOS20 mg daily for 1 monthsAzathioprine 50 mg daily for 1 weekNone60 mgOD: 20/20 OS: 20/400OD: 20/20 OS: 20/40Patient refused treatment after one week.
45 MOU60 mg daily for 1 monthsChlorambucil 8 mg daily for 18 monthsNone5 mgOD: LP OS: NLPOD: 20/50 OS: LP
Azathioprine 200 mg daily
Chlorambucil 6 mg daily for over three years
27 FOU80 mg daily for 1 monthsChlorambucil 6 mg daily for 18 monthsAgranulocytosis and sepsis10 mgOD: 20/60 OS: NLPOD: 20/20 OS: CFChlorambucil disontinued because of episode of sepsis.
Azathioprine 200 mg daily for 4 yearsNone
Dutton JJ198244 FAutoimmune retrobulbar optic neuritisOUUnknown doseUnknownChlorambucil 6 mg daily for 2 yearsUnknown0 mgOD:20/80 OS:20/25OD:20/20 OS:20/20
26 FOUCushingoid, depressionChlorambucil 6 mg daily and azathioprine 75 mg daily for 1 yearOD:CF OS:CFOD:20/30 OS:20/300
42 FODUnknownChlorambucil 6 mg daily for 6 monthsLP20/20