Pediatric Ophthalmology

Pediatric Ophthalmology Publications

Gjerde H, Mantagos IS. Charting the Globe: How Technologies Have Affected Our Understanding of Retinal Findings in Abusive Head Trauma/Shaken Baby Syndrome. Semin Ophthalmol 2021;:1-5.Abstract
Ocular findings such as retinal hemorrhages are common in abusive head trauma (AHT). Binocular indirect ophthalmoscopy has been the standard for assessing the eyes of children who are victims of AHT. However, technological advances have changed our understanding of retinal findings in AHT. Literature review on AHT - retinal findings, imaging technologies, models of representation, and telemedicine applications. Many studies suggest vitreoretinal traction from repetitive acceleration-deceleration shearing forces during shaking plays an important role in the development of retinal findings in AHT. This is further supported by different imaging modalities [optical coherence tomography (OCT); magnetic resonance imaging (MRI); fluorescein angiography (FA)] and models of representation (animal and mechanical models; finite element analysis). Emerging technologies have augmented our diagnostic abilities, enhanced our understanding regarding the pathophysiology of retinal findings, and strengthened the link between vitreoretinal traction and ocular pathology in AHT. Telemedicine is also starting to play an important role in AHT.
Nilsson AK, Andersson MX, Sjöbom U, Hellgren G, Lundgren P, Pivodic A, Smith LEH, Hellström A. Sphingolipidomics of serum in extremely preterm infants: Association between low sphingosine-1-phosphate levels and severe retinopathy of prematurity. Biochim Biophys Acta Mol Cell Biol Lipids 2021;1866(7):158939.Abstract
BACKGROUND: Extremely preterm infants are at risk of developing retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) that can cause impaired vision or blindness. Changes in blood lipids have been associated with ROP. This study aimed to monitor longitudinal changes in the serum sphingolipidome of extremely preterm infants and investigate the relationship to development of severe ROP. METHODS: This is a prospective study that included 47 infants born <28 gestational weeks. Serum samples were collected from cord blood and at postnatal days 1, 7, 14, and 28, and at postmenstrual weeks (PMW) 32, 36, and 40. Serum sphingolipids and phosphatidylcholines were extracted and analyzed by LC-MS/MS. Associations between sphingolipid species and ROP were assessed using mixed models for repeated measures. RESULTS: The serum concentration of all investigated lipid classes, including ceramide, mono- di- and trihexosylceramide, sphingomyelin, and phosphatidylcholine displayed distinct temporal patterns between birth and PMW40. There were also substantial changes in the lipid species composition within each class. Among the analyzed sphingolipid species, sphingosine-1-phosphate showed the strongest association with severe ROP, and this association was independent of gestational age at birth and weight standard deviation score change. CONCLUSIONS: The serum phospho- and sphingolipidome undergoes significant remodeling during the first weeks of the preterm infant's life. Low postnatal levels of the signaling lipid sphingosine-1-phosphate are associated with the development of severe ROP.
Elhusseiny AM, MacKinnon S, Zurakowski D, Huynh E, Dagi LR. Long-term ophthalmic outcomes in 120 children with unilateral coronal synostosis: a 20-year retrospective analysis. J AAPOS 2021;Abstract
BACKGROUND: Prior studies comparing ophthalmic outcomes after treating unicoronal synostosis (UCS) by early endoscopic strip craniectomy (ESC) versus later fronto-orbital advancement (FOA) are modest in sample size, or lack consistent age adjustment. We report long-term, age-adjusted ophthalmic outcomes for a large cohort after nonrandomized treatment by one of these two options. METHODS: The following data was retrieved from a retrospective review of the medical records of patients with treated UCS born since 2000: cycloplegic refractions, sensorimotor examinations, and strabismus procedures before craniofacial repair and postoperatively at approximately 18 and 60 months of age. V-pattern strabismus was graded as mild (absent or + 1/-1 oblique dysfunction) versus moderate-to-severe (≥+2/-2 oblique dysfunction or left to right vertical alignment change of ≥20Δ or ocular torticollis >15°). RESULTS: A total of 120 infants were included: 60 treated by FOA and 60 by ESC. By the late examination, aniso-astigmatism was present in 71.8% of FOA-treated patients and 46% of ESC-treated patients (P < 0.0001). By late examination, the age-adjusted odds ratio of moderate-to-severe V-pattern strabismus after treatment by FOA versus ESC was 2.65 (95% CI, 1.37-6.28; P = 0.02); strabismus surgery was performed in 26 infants treated by FOA compared with 13 treated by ESC (OR = 2.8; P = 0.02). Amblyopia developed in 60% of FOA-treated patients compared with 35% of those treated by ESC (OR 3.0; 95% CI, 1.3-6.7; P = 0.02). CONCLUSIONS: Our age-adjusted ophthalmic results confirm better long-term outcomes after treatment of USC by endoscopic strip craniectomy. Recognition and referral of affected infants by the earliest months of life facilitates the opportunity for endoscopic repair.
Rosenblatt TR, Ji MH, Vail D, Ludwig CA, Al-Moujahed A, Pasricha MV, Callaway NF, Kumm J, Moshfeghi DM. Key factors in a rigorous longitudinal image-based assessment of retinopathy of prematurity. Sci Rep 2021;11(1):5369.Abstract
To describe a database of longitudinally graded telemedicine retinal images to be used as a comparator for future studies assessing grader recall bias and ability to detect typical progression (e.g. International Classification of Retinopathy of Prematurity (ICROP) stages) as well as incremental changes in retinopathy of prematurity (ROP). Cohort comprised of retinal images from 84 eyes of 42 patients who were sequentially screened for ROP over 6 consecutive weeks in a telemedicine program and then followed to vascular maturation or treatment, and then disease stabilization. De-identified retinal images across the 6 weekly exams (2520 total images) were graded by an ROP expert based on whether ROP had improved, worsened, or stayed the same compared to the prior week's images, corresponding to an overall clinical "gestalt" score. Subsequently, we examined which parameters might have influenced the examiner's ability to detect longitudinal change; images were graded by the same ROP expert by image view (central, inferior, nasal, superior, temporal) and by retinal components (vascular tortuosity, vascular dilation, stage, hemorrhage, vessel growth), again determining if each particular retinal component or ROP in each image view had improved, worsened, or stayed the same compared to the prior week's images. Agreement between gestalt scores and view, component, and component by view scores was assessed using percent agreement, absolute agreement, and Cohen's weighted kappa statistic to determine if any of the hypothesized image features correlated with the ability to predict ROP disease trajectory in patients. The central view showed substantial agreement with gestalt scores (κ = 0.63), with moderate agreement in the remaining views. Of retinal components, vascular tortuosity showed the most overall agreement with gestalt (κ = 0.42-0.61), with only slight to fair agreement for all other components. This is a well-defined ROP database graded by one expert in a real-world setting in a masked fashion that correlated with the actual (remote in time) exams and known outcomes. This provides a foundation for subsequent study of telemedicine's ability to longitudinally assess ROP disease trajectory, as well as for potential artificial intelligence approaches to retinal image grading, in order to expand patient access to timely, accurate ROP screening.
Scelfo C, Mantagos IS. Neurotrophic Keratopathy in Pediatric Patients. Semin Ophthalmol 2021;:1-7.Abstract
: This review provides an overview of the causes and treatment of neurotrophic keratopathy in the pediatric population.: A thorough review of the current literature discussing neurotrophic keratopathy was conducted then summarized.Fourty-nine papers were reviewed. Congenital and acquired causes of neurotrophic keratopathy exist in the pediatric population. Both medical and surgical approaches to treatment have been trialed, albeit to a limited extent, in pediatric patients. Conservative treatment includes topical lubrication and antibiotics to prevent concurrent infectious ulcer formation. Various neurotrophic factors have been trialed in the form of serum drops to restore corneal sensation when conservative measures fail. Surgically, different corneal neurotization techniques have been developed whereby a donor nerve is routed to the anesthetized cornea to restore innervation and sensation. : Advances in the treatment of neurotrophic keratopathy have made corneal reinnervation and restoration of vision more easily attainable in pediatric patients.
Jurgens JA, Barry BJ, Lemire G, Chan W-M, Whitman MC, Shaaban S, Robson CD, MacKinnon S, England EM, McMillan HJ, Kelly C, Pratt BM, Pratt BM, O'Donnell-Luria A, MacArthur DG, Boycott KM, Hunter DG, Engle EC. Novel variants in TUBA1A cause congenital fibrosis of the extraocular muscles with or without malformations of cortical brain development. Eur J Hum Genet 2021;Abstract
Variants in multiple tubulin genes have been implicated in neurodevelopmental disorders, including malformations of cortical development (MCD) and congenital fibrosis of the extraocular muscles (CFEOM). Distinct missense variants in the beta-tubulin encoding genes TUBB3 and TUBB2B cause MCD, CFEOM, or both, suggesting substitution-specific mechanisms. Variants in the alpha tubulin-encoding gene TUBA1A have been associated with MCD, but not with CFEOM. Using exome sequencing (ES) and genome sequencing (GS), we identified 3 unrelated probands with CFEOM who harbored novel heterozygous TUBA1A missense variants c.1216C>G, p.(His406Asp); c.467G>A, p.(Arg156His); and c.1193T>G, p.(Met398Arg). MRI revealed small oculomotor-innervated muscles and asymmetrical caudate heads and lateral ventricles with or without corpus callosal thinning. Two of the three probands had MCD. Mutated amino acid residues localize either to the longitudinal interface at which α and β tubulins heterodimerize (Met398, His406) or to the lateral interface at which tubulin protofilaments interact (Arg156), and His406 interacts with the motor domain of kinesin-1. This series of individuals supports TUBA1A variants as a cause of CFEOM and expands our knowledge of tubulinopathies.
Jabroun MN, AlWattar BK, Fulton AB. Optical Coherence Tomography Angiography in Prematurity. Semin Ophthalmol 2021;:1-7.Abstract
: During normal foveal development there is a close interaction between the neurosensory and vascular elements of the fovea making it vulnerable to prematurity and retinopathy of prematurity (ROP). We aim to assess this potential effect on foveal development in preterms evaluated simultaneously with both optical coherence tomography (OCT) and OCT angiography (OCTA).: Unrestricted literature search in the PubMed and Cochrane library databases yielded 20 distinct citations. Fifteen were relevant and reviewed.: In preterms, OCTA demonstrated a significant decrease in the foveal avascular zone area and an increase in foveal vessel density. OCT showed a decrease in foveal pit depth and an increase in the thickness of the subfoveal retinal layers. Some studies correlated these changes with reduced vision.: Changes in the vascular and neurosensory retina were found in premature children. It remains unclear whether this is related to prematurity alone or ROP and its treatment.
Falcone MM, Hunter DG, Gaier ED. Emerging therapies for amblyopia. Semin Ophthalmol 2021;:1-7.Abstract
Traditional therapies to treat amblyopia, such as optical correction or occlusion/penalization of the non-amblyopic eye, are efficacious but are not without limitations such as poor adherence and decreased success with increasing age. Recently, there has been an interest in new amblyopia therapies, some using binocular techniques, through a variety of platforms including video games, movies, and virtual reality. Overall, available efficacy results for these treatments are highly variable.
Hellgren G, Lundgren P, Pivodic A, Löfqvist C, Nilsson AK, Ley D, Sävman K, Smith LE, Hellström A. Decreased Platelet Counts and Serum Levels of VEGF-A, PDGF-BB, and BDNF in Extremely Preterm Infants Developing Severe ROP. Neonatology 2021;:1-10.Abstract
INTRODUCTION: Thrombocytopenia has been identified as an independent risk factor for retinopathy of prematurity (ROP), although underlying mechanisms are unknown. In this study, the association of platelet count and serum platelet-derived factors with ROP was investigated. METHODS: Data for 78 infants born at gestational age (GA) <28 weeks were included. Infants were classified as having no/mild ROP or severe ROP. Serum levels of vascular endothelial growth factor A, platelet-derived growth factor BB, and brain-derived neurotrophic factor were measured in serum samples collected from birth until postmenstrual age (PMA) 40 weeks. Platelet counts were obtained from samples taken for clinical indication. RESULTS: Postnatal platelet counts and serum concentrations of the 3 growth factors followed the same postnatal pattern, with lower levels in infants developing severe ROP at PMA 32 and 36 weeks (p < 0.05-0.001). With adjustment for GA, low platelet counts and low serum concentrations of all 3 factors at PMA 32 weeks were significantly associated with severe ROP. Serum concentrations of all 3 factors also strongly correlated with platelet count (p < 0.001). CONCLUSION: In this article, we show that ROP, platelet counts, and specific pro-angiogenic factors correlate. These data suggest that platelet-released factors might be involved in the regulation of retinal and systemic angiogenesis after extremely preterm birth. Further investigations are needed.
Hellström A, Nilsson AK, Wackernagel D, Pivodic A, Vanpee M, Sjöbom U, Hellgren G, Hallberg B, Domellöf M, Klevebro S, Hellström W, Andersson M, Lund A-M, Löfqvist C, Elfvin A, Sävman K, Hansen-Pupp I, Hård A-L, Smith LEH, Ley D. Effect of Enteral Lipid Supplement on Severe Retinopathy of Prematurity: A Randomized Clinical Trial. JAMA Pediatr 2021;175(4):359-367.Abstract
Importance: Lack of arachidonic acid (AA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) after extremely preterm birth may contribute to preterm morbidity, including retinopathy of prematurity (ROP). Objective: To determine whether enteral supplementation with fatty acids from birth to 40 weeks' postmenstrual age reduces ROP in extremely preterm infants. Design, Setting, and Participants: The Mega Donna Mega trial, a randomized clinical trial, was a multicenter study performed at 3 university hospitals in Sweden from December 15, 2016, to December 15, 2019. The screening pediatric ophthalmologists were masked to patient groupings. A total of 209 infants born at less than 28 weeks' gestation were tested for eligibility, and 206 infants were included. Efficacy analyses were performed on as-randomized groups on the intention-to-treat population and on the per-protocol population using as-treated groups. Statistical analyses were performed from February to April 2020. Interventions: Infants received either supplementation with an enteral oil providing AA (100 mg/kg/d) and DHA (50 mg/kg/d) (AA:DHA group) or no supplementation within 3 days after birth until 40 weeks' postmenstrual age. Main Outcomes and Measures: The primary outcome was severe ROP (stage 3 and/or type 1). The secondary outcomes were AA and DHA serum levels and rates of other complications of preterm birth. Results: A total of 101 infants (58 boys [57.4%]; mean [SD] gestational age, 25.5 [1.5] weeks) were included in the AA:DHA group, and 105 infants (59 boys [56.2%]; mean [SD] gestational age, 25.5 [1.4] weeks) were included in the control group. Treatment with AA and DHA reduced severe ROP compared with the standard of care (16 of 101 [15.8%] in the AA:DHA group vs 35 of 105 [33.3%] in the control group; adjusted relative risk, 0.50 [95% CI, 0.28-0.91]; P = .02). The AA:DHA group had significantly higher fractions of AA and DHA in serum phospholipids compared with controls (overall mean difference in AA:DHA group, 0.82 mol% [95% CI, 0.46-1.18 mol%]; P < .001; overall mean difference in control group, 0.13 mol% [95% CI, 0.01-0.24 mol%]; P = .03). There were no significant differences between the AA:DHA group and the control group in the rates of bronchopulmonary dysplasia (48 of 101 [47.5%] vs 48 of 105 [45.7%]) and of any grade of intraventricular hemorrhage (43 of 101 [42.6%] vs 42 of 105 [40.0%]). In the AA:DHA group and control group, respectively, sepsis occurred in 42 of 101 infants (41.6%) and 53 of 105 infants (50.5%), serious adverse events occurred in 26 of 101 infants (25.7%) and 26 of 105 infants (24.8%), and 16 of 101 infants (15.8%) and 13 of 106 infants (12.3%) died. Conclusions and Relevance: This study found that, compared with standard of care, enteral AA:DHA supplementation lowered the risk of severe ROP by 50% and showed overall higher serum levels of both AA and DHA. Enteral lipid supplementation with AA:DHA is a novel preventive strategy to decrease severe ROP in extremely preterm infants. Trial Registration: ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT03201588.
Zhang YJ, Jimenez L, Azova S, Kremen J, Chan Y-M, Elhusseiny AM, Saeed H, Goldsmith J, Al-Ibraheemi A, O'Connell AE, Kovbasnjuk O, Rodan L, Agrawal PB, Thiagarajah JR. Novel variants in the stem cell niche factor WNT2B define the disease phenotype as a congenital enteropathy with ocular dysgenesis. Eur J Hum Genet 2021;Abstract
WNT2B is a member of the Wnt family, a group of signal transduction proteins involved in embryologic development and stem cell renewal and maintenance. We recently reported homozygous nonsense variants in WNT2B in three individuals with severe, neonatal-onset diarrhea, and intestinal failure. Here we present a fourth case, from a separate family, with neonatal diarrhea associated with novel compound heterozygous WNT2B variants. One of the two variants was a frameshift variant (c.423del [p.Phe141fs]), while the other was a missense change (c.722 G > A [p.G241D]) that we predict through homology modeling to be deleterious, disrupting post-translational acylation. This patient presented as a neonate with severe diet-induced (osmotic) diarrhea and growth failure resulting in dependence on parenteral nutrition. Her gastrointestinal histology revealed abnormal cellular architecture particularly in the stomach and colon, including oxyntic atrophy, abnormal distribution of enteroendocrine cells, and a paucity of colonic crypt glands. In addition to her gastrointestinal findings, she had bilateral corneal clouding and atypical genital development later identified as a testicular 46,XX difference/disorder of sexual development. Upon review of the previously reported cases, two others also had anterior segment ocular anomalies though none had atypical genital development. This growing case series suggests that variants in WNT2B are associated with an oculo-intestinal (and possibly gonadal) syndrome, due to the protein's putative involvement in multiple developmental and stem cell maintenance pathways.
Ehrenberg M, Bagdonite-Bejarano L, Fulton AB, Orenstein N, Yahalom C. Genetic causes of nystagmus, foveal hypoplasia and subnormal visual acuity- other than albinism. Ophthalmic Genet 2021;:1-9.Abstract
: To describe genetic molecular findings in individuals with congenital nystagmus, foveal hypoplasia, and subnormal vision, with normal ocular pigmentation (absence of diffuse transillumination or transparent retinal pigment typical for albinism). : This is a retrospective, multicenter study of ophthalmic, systemic, and genetic features, as collected from medical records of patients diagnosed with infantile nystagmus and foveal hypoplasia. Ophthalmic findings include best-corrected visual acuity (BCVA), biomicroscopic examination, cycloplegic refraction, retinal examination, macular optical coherence tomography, and electroretinography. Genetic information was retrieved from the participating genetic clinics and included ethnicity and molecular diagnosis. : Thirty-one individuals met the inclusion criteria and had a secure molecular diagnosis. Mutations in two genes predominated, constituting 77.4% of all the represented genes: (45.1%) and (32.3%). Seventy-eight percent of the subjects who had a measurable BCVA had moderate and severe visual impairment (range 20/80 to 20/270). Most patients with a mutation in had mild to moderate astigmatism, while most patients with mutation had moderate and severe myopia. Patients in the group had variable degrees of anterior segment manifestations. : In our cohort, the main causative genes for congenital nystagmus and foveal hypoplasia in normally pigmented eyes were and . A mild phenotype in mutations may be an under-diagnosed cause of nystagmus and foveal hypoplasia. Reaching an accurate genetic diagnosis is essential for both the patients and their family members. This enables predicting disease prognosis, tailoring correct follow-up, and providing genetic counseling and family planning to affected families.

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