PURPOSE: The diagnosis of neuropathic corneal pain (NCP) is challenging, as it is often difficult to differentiate from conventional dry eye disease (DED). In addition to eye pain, NCP can present with similar signs and symptoms of DED. The purpose of this study is to find an objective diagnostic sign to identify patients with NCP, using in vivo confocal microscopy (IVCM). METHODS: This was a comparative, retrospective, case-control study. Patients with clinical diagnosis of NCP (n = 25), DED (n = 30), and age and sex-matched healthy controls (n = 16), who underwent corneal imaging with IVCM (HRT3/RCM) were included. Central corneal IVCM scans were analyzed by 2 masked observers for nerve density and number, presence of micro-neuromas (terminal enlargements of subbasal corneal nerve) and/or nerve beading (bead-like formation along the nerves), and dendritiform cell (DC) density. RESULTS: There was a decrease in total nerve density in both NCP (14.14 ± 1.03 mm/mm) and DED patients (12.86 ± 1.04 mm/mm), as compared to normal controls (23.90 ± 0.92 mm/mm; p < 0.001). However, total nerve density was not statistically different between NCP and DED patients (p = 0.63). Presence of nerve beading was not significantly different between patients and normal controls (p = 0.15). Interestingly, micro-neuromas were observed in all patients with NCP, while they were not present in any of the patients with DED (sensitivity and specificity of 100%). DC density was increased significantly in both NCP (71.89 ± 16.91 cells/mm) and DED patients (111.5 ± 23.86 cells/mm), as compared to normal controls (24.81 ± 4.48 cells/mm (Colloca et al., 2017) ; p < 0.05). However, there was no significant difference in DC density between DED and NCP patients (p = 0.31). CONCLUSION: IVCM may be used as an adjunct diagnostic tool for the diagnosis of NCP in the presence of neuropathic symptoms. Micro-neuromas may serve as a sensitive and specific biomarker for the diagnosis of NCP.
Purpose: To investigate the roles of motion perception and visual acuity in driving hazard detection. Methods: Detection of driving hazard was tested based on video and still-frames of real-world road scenes. In the experiment using videos, 20 normally sighted participants were tested under four conditions: with or without motion interruption by interframe mask, and with or without simulated low visual acuity (20/120 on average) by using a diffusing filter. Videos were down-sampled to 2.5 Hz, to allow the addition of motion interrupting masks between the frames to maintain video durations. In addition, single still frames extracted from the videos were shown in random order to eight normally sighted participants, who judged whether the frames were during ongoing hazards, with or without the diffuser. Sensitivity index d-prime (d') was compared between unmasked motion ( = 20) and still frame conditions ( = 8). Results: In the experiment using videos, there was a significant reduction in a combined performance score (taking account of reaction time and detection rate) when the motion was disrupted ( = 0.016). The diffuser did not affect the scores ( = 0.419). The score reduction was mostly due to a decrease in the detection rate ( = 0.002), not the response time ( = 0.148). The d' of participants significantly decreased ( < 0.001) from 2.24 with unmasked videos to 0.68 with still frames. Low visual acuity also had a significant effect on the d' ( = 0.004), but the change was relatively small, from 2.03 without to 1.56 with the diffuser. Conclusions: Motion perception plays a more important role than visual acuity for detecting driving hazards. Translational Relevance: Motion perception may be a relevant criterion for fitness to drive.
There remains great interest in understanding the relationship between visual impairment (VI) and autism spectrum disorder (ASD) due to the extraordinarily high prevalence of ASD in blind and visually impaired children. The broad variability across individuals and assessment methodologies have made it difficult to understand whether autistic-like symptoms shown by some children with VI might reflect the influence of the visual deficit, or represent a primary neurodevelopmental condition that occurs independently of the VI itself. In the absence of a valid methodology adapted for the visually impaired population, diagnosis of ASD in children with VI is often based on non-objective clinical impression, with inconclusive prevalence data. In this review, we discuss the current state of knowledge and suggest directions for future research.
Purpose: During the COVID-19 pandemic, there is growing concern that patients are forgoing necessary care. Emergency departments (ED) represent an important site of eye care. We analyzed patterns of ED visits at an eye-specific ED since the declaration of the public health crisis. Materials and Methods: In this retrospective, cross-sectional single center study, medical records of 6744 patients who presented to the Massachusetts Eye and Ear ED between March 1st and April 30th in 2018, 2019, and 2020 were studied. The primary outcome measures were total volume of ED visits, proportion of urgent ED visits, and proportion of surgical visits. Results: Overall, the median number of daily visits to the ED decreased by 18 visits per day since the declaration of public health guidelines (interquartile range, 9-24, p < 0.001). This accounted for a 32% decrease in the total volume of ED visits in 2020 compared to prior years during the study period (p < 0.001). There was a 9% increase in the proportion of primary diagnoses considered urgent (p = 0.002). The proportion of visits requiring urgent surgery increased by 39% (p = 0.004). Conclusion: The total number of eye-specific ED visits dropped compared to prior years while the proportion of urgent visits increased. Patients were likely more reluctant to seek eye care, deferring less urgent evaluation.
Objective: To investigate the incidence, clinicopathological characteristics and survival of ocular adnexal lymphoma (OAL) in the paediatric population. Methods and analysis: In this retrospective case series, the Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results database was accessed to identify individuals with OAL ≤18 years of age, diagnosed between 1973 and 2015. OAL located in the eyelid, conjunctiva, lacrimal apparatus and orbit were included. Main outcome measures were the age-adjusted incidence rates (IRs) per 1 000 000 population at risk (calculated for the period 2000-2015) and descriptive statistics of demographic and clinicopathological features. Results: The IR of paediatric OAL was 0.12 (95% CI 0.08 to 0.16) per 1 000 000. Males (0.15; 95% CI 0.10 to 0.22) and blacks (0.24; 95% CI 0.13 to 0.42) had a higher tendency for OAL development. A total of 55 tumours in 54 children were identified. The majority were localised (78.4%), conjunctival (49.1%) lymphomas. Extranodal marginal zone lymphoma (EMZL, 45.5%, n=25) was the most frequent subtype, followed by diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL, 9.1%, n=5), B lymphoblastic lymphoma (7.3%, n=4), follicular lymphoma (5.5%, n=3), Burkitt lymphoma (5.5%, n=3), anaplastic large cell lymphoma (ALCL, 3.6%, n=2), small lymphocytic lymphoma (1.8%, n=1), diffuse large B-cell lymphoma, immunoblastic (1.8%, n=1) and panniculitis-like T-cell lymphoma (1.8%, n=1). Localised, low-grade, conjunctival lymphomas were frequently treated with complete excision with or without radiation, while high-grade and distant tumours usually received chemotherapy. Only 29.1% of paediatric OAL cases were treated with radiation. Three out of five (60%) patients with DLBCL died of lymphoma at a median follow-up of 21 (range 10-86) months, and 1 out of 2 (50%) patients with ALCL died of lymphoma at 23 months from diagnosis. Conclusion: OAL in the paediatric population is rare. The majority of OAL are EMZL and are characterised by excellent prognosis. The histological subtype was found to be the main predictor of outcome with cancer-specific deaths observed in patients with DLBCL and ALCL.
Regulatory T cells (Tregs) are necessary to prevent autoimmune disease. As such, stable FoxP3 expression is required for the proper function of Tregs in the control of autoimmune disease. Different Treg subsets that utilize different mechanisms of suppression have been identified. The T-cell immunoglobulin immunoreceptor tyrosine-based inhibitory motif (TIGIT) is a relatively new Treg cell marker that has a suppressive function. We have previously identified the adenosine 2A receptor (A2Ar) as a requirement for the emergence of Tregs following resolution of autoimmune disease. Using a FoxP3-GFP-Cre reporter mouse, we identify FoxP3 and 'exFoxP3' cells, show FoxP3 and not exFoxP3 cells are suppressive. We further show FoxP3 cells express TIGIT, and are induced through A2Ar in healthy volunteers, but not patients with autoimmune disease. Furthermore, we show Tregs emerge in the target tissue at the onset of autoimmune disease in an A2Ar-dependent manner. In summary, we identify a novel subset of TIGIT Tregs that are induced through stimulation of the A2Ar.
BACKGROUND: This study aimed to assess the prevalence and causes of vision loss in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) in 2015, compared with prior years, and to estimate expected values for 2020. METHODS: A systematic review and meta-analysis assessed the prevalence of blindness (presenting distance visual acuity <3/60 in the better eye), moderate and severe vision impairment (MSVI; presenting distance visual acuity <6/18 but ≥3/60) and mild vision impairment (MVI; presenting distance visual acuity <6/12 and ≥6/18), and also near vision impairment (
BACKGROUND: To prevent irreversible vision loss in age-related macular degeneration (AMD), it is critical to detect retinal dysfunction before permanent structural loss occurs. In the current study we evaluated a series of visual function tests to identify potential endpoints to detect visual dysfunction in non-advanced AMD. METHODS: A series of visual function tests were performed on 23 non-advanced AMD subjects (AREDS grade 1-4 on simplified scale) and 34 age-matched normals (AREDS grade 0). Tests included some commonly used endpoints such as ETDRS visual acuity (VA), low luminance (LL) 2.0ND ETDRS VA, MNREAD as well as newly developed tests such as the Ora-VCF™ test, Ora-tablet reading test, color sensitivity etc. Differences between the two groups were compared for each test. Test-retest repeatability and reproducibility was assessed on a subset of subjects and percent agreement was calculated. RESULTS: There was no difference in standard ETDRS VA between non-advanced AMD (0.06 ± 0.02 logMAR) and normal groups (0.04 ± 0.02 logMAR) (p = 0.57). LL 2.0 ETDRS VA and MNREAD showed no difference between the groups (p > 0.05). Ora-VCF™ test was significantly worse in the non-advanced AMD group compared to normals (0.67 ± 0.07 in AMD; 0.45 ± 0.04 in normals, p = 0.005). Non-advanced AMD subjects also had significantly worse reading performance using the Ora-tablet with LL 2.0ND (114.55 ± 11.22 wpm in AMD; 145.17 ± 9.55 wpm in normals p = 0.049). No significant difference between the groups was noted using other tests. Repeatability was 82% for Ora-VCF™ test and 92% for Ora-tablet LL 2.0ND reading. Reproducibility was 89% for both Ora-VCF™ test and Ora-tablet LL 2.0ND reading. CONCLUSION: While there was no significant difference between non-advanced AMD and normal groups using some current common endpoints such as ETDRS VA, LL 2.0 ETDRS VA or MNREAD, Ora-VCF™ test and Ora-tablet LL 2.0ND reading tests were able to identify significant visual dysfunction in non-advanced AMD subjects. These tests show promise as endpoints for AMD studies.
Purpose: Early detection and treatment of age-related macular degeneration require a clear understanding of the early progress of the disease. The purpose of this study was to investigate whether minimal macular ophthalmoscopic changes corresponded to changes in visual function. Methods: Color macular photos from a group of older subjects who were classified as grade 0 on AREDS simplified grading were further evaluated by a retinal specialist using 5x magnification for possible minimal macular anomalies. Group 0-A ( = 15) were defined as subjects with no visible macular anomalies while Group 0-B ( = 19) comprised subjects for whom minimal macular mottling, pigment changes or very small drusen (< 63 µm) were observed in the study eye. All subjects had best VA of 20/25 or better and had no evidence of other retinal diseases in the study eye. All subjects underwent a series of visual function tests such as standard ETDRS VA, low luminance ETDRS VA, Pelli-Robson contrast sensitivity, variable contrast flicker (VCF) sensitivity, and reading speed (words per minute, wpm) using both MNRead and low luminance reading on a tablet. Results: There was no significant difference between the mean age between the two groups (74.8 ± 5.2 years for 0-A vs 74.5 ± 4.4 for 0-B, = 0.82). None of the visual function tests identified any significant difference between the two groups. Mean ETDRS VA was 0.0 ± 0.11 for 0-A subjects and 0.08 ± 0.12 for 0-B ( = 0.063). Mean Pelli-Robson log contrast sensitivity was 1.75 ± 0.29 for 0-A and 1.78 ± 0.17 for the 0-B group ( = 0.73). VCF threshold was 0.47 ± 0.25 for 0-A and 0.43 ± 0.22 for 0-B ( = 0.64). Reading speed using MNRead was 214 ± 47.4 wpm for 0-A and 210 ± 64.7 for 0-B ( = 0.85). Low luminance tablet reading speed was 137 ± 71.8 wpm for 0-A and 151 ± 39.4 (0-B) ( = 0.49). Conclusion: A panel of psychophysical tests did not demonstrate significant differences between subjects with and without minimal macular changes.
When radiologists search for a specific target (e.g., lung cancer), they are also asked to report any other clinically significant "incidental findings" (e.g., pneumonia). These incidental findings are missed at an undesirably high rate. In an effort to understand and reduce these errors, Wolfe et al. (Cognitive Research: Principles and Implications 2:35, 2017) developed "mixed hybrid search" as a model system for incidental findings. In this task, non-expert observers memorize six targets: half of these targets are specific images (analogous to the suspected diagnosis in the clinical task). The other half are broader, categorically defined targets, like "animals" or "cars" (analogous to the less well-specified incidental findings). In subsequent search through displays for any instances of any of the targets, observers miss about one third of the categorical targets, mimicking the incidental finding problem. In the present paper, we attempted to reduce the number of errors in the mixed hybrid search task with the goal of finding methods that could be deployed in a clinical setting. In Experiments 1a and 1b, we reminded observers about the categorical targets by inserting non-search trials in which categorical targets were clearly marked. In Experiment 2, observers responded twice on each trial: once to confirm the presence or absence of the specific targets, and once to confirm the presence or absence of the categorical targets. In Experiment 3, observers were required to confirm the presence or absence of every target on every trial using a checklist procedure. Only Experiment 3 produced a marked decline in categorical target errors, but at the cost of a substantial increase in response time.
PURPOSE: To document a unique case of anorectal squamous cell carcinoma that was metastatic to the microvasculature of the lacrimal gland in a patient with human immunodeficiency virus and to review previously reported cases of metastases to the lacrimal gland. METHODS: Both a retrospective chart review and comprehensive literature review were performed. The unusual histopathologic pattern of the current case was illustrated with immunohistochemical studies (CD31, D2-40, pancytokeratin, p16, and p63) and in situ hybridization studies for high-risk human papillomavirus types 16 and 18. RESULTS: The authors describe the first case of metastatic anorectal squamous cell carcinoma to the lacrimal gland. Only 24 cases of metastatic disease to the lacrimal gland have been reported, the majority from breast carcinomas. The metastasis did not form a macroscopic lesions, instead was composed of microscopic intravascular and intraparenchymal tumor deposits, a subtle phenomena. Immunohistochemistry confirmed the presence of the intravascular neoplastic cells. p16 served as a surrogate marker for human papillomavirus-associated squamous cell carcinoma and was confirmed with in situ hybridization for human papillomavirus 16 and 18. This testing, combined with the clinical history, defined the diagnosis and confirmed human papillomavirus as the tumor driver. CONCLUSIONS: Metastases to the lacrimal gland remain rare, but clinicians and pathologists alike must be attuned to the possibility of subtle microscopic foci of tumor as a pattern of metastasis in scenarios without a discrete mass-forming lesion, as this may portend a poor prognosis.
BACKGROUND: Senior-Loken syndrome is a rare genetic disorder that presents with nephronophthisis and retinal degeneration, leading to end-stage renal disease and progressive blindness. The most frequent cause of juvenile nephronophthisis is a mutation in the nephronophthisis type 1 (NPHP1) gene. NPHP1 encodes the protein nephrocystin-1, which functions at the transition zone (TZ) of primary cilia. METHODS: We report a 9-year-old Senior-Loken syndrome boy with NPHP1 deletion, who presents with bilateral vision decrease and cystic renal disease. Renal function deteriorated to require bilateral nephrectomy and renal transplant. We performed immunohistochemistry, H&E staining, and electron microscopy on the renal sample to determine the subcellular distribution of ciliary proteins in the absence of NPHP1. RESULTS: Immunohistochemistry and electron microscopy of the resected kidney showed disorganized cystic structures with loss of cilia in renal tubules. Phosphoinositides have been recently recognized as critical components of the ciliary membrane and immunostaining of kidney sections for phosphoinositide 5-phosphatase, INPP5E, showed loss of staining compared to healthy control. Ophthalmic examination showed decreased electroretinogram consistent with early retinal degeneration. CONCLUSION: The decreased expression of INPP5E specifically in the primary cilium, coupled with disorganized cilia morphology, suggests a novel role of NPHP1 that it is involved in regulating ciliary phosphoinositide composition in the ciliary membrane of renal tubular cells.
Nolan JG, Vestal M, Stone S, Dagi LR. "Plugged In". Orbit 2020;39(1):73-74.
We report the surgical management of a patient with bilateral anterior lenticonus due to Alport syndrome using femtosecond laser-assisted cataract surgery (FLACS) and the Optiwave Refractive Analysis (ORA) system. A 38-year-old man with Alport syndrome presented to our department with visual loss due to anterior lenticonus in both eyes. Adjustments during bilateral FLACS were performed with the software's calipers to manually delineate the anterior capsulotomy. Multifocal toric intraocular lenses (IOLs) were selected and placed in the posterior chamber with the aid of intraoperative aberrometry. The intended postoperative positioning parameters for the IOL as well as the planned visual acuity and refraction were achieved. The implementation of FLACS and intraoperative wavefront aberrometry is a safe and useful surgical approach for the management of cataract in challenging cases such as patients with anterior lenticonus due to Alport syndrome.
OBJECTIVE: To explore the role of cardiovascular risk factors and the different NOTCH-3 mutations to explain the variability observed in the clinical presentation of CADASIL. METHODS: This was a retrospective cohort study of 331 individuals, 90 were carriers of four mutations in the NOTCH3 gene. These four mutations are the ones identified in our region from the genetic evaluation of probands. Cox proportional hazards models were fitted to estimate the effect of genetic and cardiovascular factors on the onset of migraine, first stroke, and dementia. Competing risk regression models considered death as risk. RESULTS: Noncarriers (healthy controls from the same families without NOTCH3 mutations) and NOTCH3 mutation carriers had similar frequencies for all cardiovascular risk factors. Diabetes (SHR 2.74, 95% CI 1.52-4.94) was associated with a younger age at onset of strokes among carriers. Additionally, a genotype-phenotype relationship was observed among C455R mutation carriers, with higher frequency of migraines (100%), younger age at onset of migraine (median age 7 years, IQR 8) and strokes (median age 30.5 years, IQR 26). Moreover, fewer carriers of the R141C mutation exhibited migraines (20%), and it was even lower than the frequency observed in the noncarrier group (44.8%). CONCLUSIONS: This study characterizes extended family groups, allowing us a comparison in the genotype-phenotype. The results suggest a complex interplay of genetic and cardiovascular risk factors that may help explain the variability in the clinical presentation and severity of CADASIL.
BACKGROUND: To evaluate the preliminary effects of treating the half of high latent hyperopia on refractive and visual outcomes of femtosecond laser-assisted in situ keratomileusis (LASIK) in young subjects with hyperopia. METHODS: This non-randomized comparative study includes 120 eyes of 60 subjects who underwent femtosecond LASIK to correct hyperopia. Group 1 (n = 60) includes subjects with ≤ 1D algebraic difference (DRSE) between cycloplegic (CRSE) and manifest (MRSE) refraction spherical equivalents and was treated by entering manifest refraction values. Group 2 includes subjects with > 1D DRSE and was treated by entering the mean manifest and cycloplegic refraction values. Refractive and subjective outcomes obtained at the 1-, 3-, and 6-month postoperative visits were compared. RESULTS: The mean age of the subjects was 26.2 ± 3.5 and 26.2 ± 5.2 years for Group 1 and Group 2, respectively. The male-to-female ratios were 10/10 in both groups. Demographic values of the groups were similar (p > 0.05). Preoperative MRSE values were similar (p = 0.924), while CRSE and DRSE values were significantly higher in Group 2 (p < 0.001). At the 1- and 3-month postoperative visits, MRSE was higher and uncorrected distance visual acuity (UDVA) was lower in Group 2 (p < 0.001). Subjective visual parameters and quality of vision scores were also worse in Group 2 during these visits (p < 0.001); however, at the 6-month visit, all outcomes for Group 2 improved, and MRSE, UDVA, some subjective visual parameters, and quality of vision scores became similar between groups (p > 0.05). CONCLUSION: At the 6-month visit after treating the half of > 1D latent hyperopia with femtosecond LASIK, refractive and visual outcomes like MRSE, UDVA, subjective visual parameters, and quality of vision scores become similar to those obtained in ≤ 1D latent hyperopia.
Spatial patterns presented on the tongue using electro-tactile sensory substitution devices (SSDs) have been suggested to be recognized better by tracing the pattern with the tip of the tongue. We examined if the functional benefit of tracing is overcoming the poor sensitivity or low spatial resolution at the back of the tongue or alternatively compensating for limited information processing capacity by fixating on a segment of the spatial pattern at a time. Using a commercially available SSD, the BrainPort, we compared letter recognition performance in three presentation modes; tracing, static, and drawing. Stimulation intensity was either constant or increased from the tip to the back of the tongue to partially compensate for the decreasing sensitivity. Recognition was significantly better for tracing, compared to static and drawing conditions. Confusion analyses showed that letters were confused based on their characteristics presented near the tip in static and drawing conditions. The results suggest that recognition performance is limited by the poor spatial resolution at the back of the tongue, and tracing seems to be an effective strategy to overcome this. Compensating for limited information processing capacity or poor sensitivity by drawing or increasing intensity at the back, respectively, does not improve the performance.
Canthoplasty as a cosmetic procedure appears to be on the rise in the West. Online search query data offers a powerful tool for analyzing population trends, including changes in patient interest in surgical procedures. Cosmetic surgeons can utilize the internet to increase patient education and interest, as well as to provide information and address misinformation. In this study we sought to verify the increase in cosmetic canthoplasty, for the first time, through analysis of Internet search data, and to establish trends in the interest of Internet users for cosmetic canthoplasty. These trends were subsequently compared with trends in literature publication to establish whether there is a correlation between patient and surgeon interest in the procedure.