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M.H. Steppat, F. Sommer, L.E. Pillunat; Ophthalmological Findings in Patients With Diseases of The Hematopoietic System Before and After Bone Marrow Transplantation . Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2006;47(13):596.
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Diverse pathological ocular findings are common in patients with diseases of the hematopoietic system. Additionally, graft–versus–host disease can manifest in the eye and ocular appendices in patients who underwent bone marrow transplantation. Development of dry eye is most frequent. One can distinguish between acute GVHD, appearing within the fist three months, and chronic GVHD, appearing after three months or persisting for more than three months.
We screened 37 patients with diseases of the hematopoietic system (visual acuity, intraocular pressure, anterior part and fundus examination) before bone–marrow–transplantation and carried out follow–up examinations up to one year.
Before bone marrow transplantation four patients showed signs of ocular pathologies like retinal hemorrhages, papilloedema, and enlargement of the lacrimal gland. Two patients had dry eye. New development of dry eye or the impairment of pre–existing dry eye was interpreted as an ocular manifestation of GVHD. According to this definition, approximately 27% of the examined patients developed acute GVHD and 60% chronic GVHD. Other pathological findings were not observed.
Aim of this prospective study was to determine the frequency of acute and chronic GVHD of the eye. Probably as a consequence of improved prophylaxis of the disease, the incidence of acute GVHD seems to be reduced in comparison to further studies.
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