THURSDAY, Nov. 9, 2023 (HealthDay News) — For pediatric patients with sickle cell disease (SCD), ophthalmologic complications include nonproliferative retinopathy (NPR) and proliferative retinopathy (PR), which occur in 33 and 6 percent, respectively, according to a study presented at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Ophthalmology, held from Nov. 3 to 6 in San Francisco.
Barbara Smith, M.D., and Mary Ellen Hoehn, M.D., from the University of Tennessee Health Science Center, describe ophthalmologic manifestations among pediatric patients with SCD who had a dilated eye exam from October 2010 to September 2022. A total of 652 patients were included who underwent eye exams during 2,240 visits.
The researchers found that 33 percent of the patients had NPR and 6 percent had PR. Panretinal photocoagulation was received by 33 eyes, most commonly for PR stage 3 (43 percent). Five eyes, all with PR, received intravitreal anti-vascular endothelial growth factor therapy. Retinal detachment and retinal artery occlusion occurred in two patients each. Following complications from SCD, vision loss (final best corrected visual acuity 20/60) was seen in one patient with a central retinal artery occlusion.
“Our data underscores the need for patients — including pediatric patients — with sickle cell disease to get routine ophthalmic screenings along with appropriate systemic and ophthalmic treatment,” Hoehn said in a statement.
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