The symptoms of acute angle closure, an emergency event that can lead to irreversible blindness without timely treatment, are diverse. Initially, these can be interpreted as internal or neurological diseases if headaches, pupil rigidity or nausea are in the foreground. The aim of our study was to assess the rate of harming and invasive diagnostics after primary presentation of patients with acute primary angle closure to nonophthalmologists.
Retrospective single center study of patients with acute primary angle closure. To analyze these patients, all patients who were treated by surgical iridectomy (5-133.0) or iridotomy by laser (5-136.1) in the period 2014-2018 at the Eye Center at Medical Center, University of Freiburg (Germany), were identified. Subsequently, data analysis was carried out through file inspection to check the inclusion and exclusion criteria and the course of the disease.
In total, 91 patients with acute primary angle closure were included. Of these, 28% (n = 25) initially presented to nonophthalmological disciplines. In this patient group 56% (n = 11) received nontargeted diagnostics, with cranial imaging in 32% (n = 8) and lumbar puncture in 8% (n = 2).
Acute primary angle closure is associated with a high rate of nontargeted diagnostics by nonophthalmologists. Therefore, the clinical picture of acute angle closure should be in mind across all disciplines. With unspecific symptoms such as headaches, nausea and vomiting as well as pupil rigidity, the possibility of an acute increase in intraocular pressure caused by acute angle closure must be considered and early consultation with an ophthalmologist is recommended.