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Timothy McCulley, Laura Phan, Thomas Bosley, zakeya alsadah; Arteritic and Non-arteritic Anterior Ischemic Optic Neuropathy: Relative Incidence in Saudi Arabia. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2013;54(15):2353.
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Based on the small absolute number of patients with biopsy proven giant cell arteritis (GCA), it has been suggested that the incidence of GCA is lower in the Saudi Arabian than western (Caucasian) population. To further assess this claim, we evaluate the proportion of patients presenting with anterior ischemic optic neuropathy (AION) found to have GCA in Saudi Arabia.
In this University Based Study, the computer database at a single institute was used to identify 171 consecutive patients presenting with AION between 1997 and 2012. Diagnostic criteria for non-arteritic AION (NAION) were similar to that used in the IONDT. The diagnosis of arteritic AION (AAION) was based on clinical presentation and positive temporal artery biopsy. The number of patients with and without GCA was tabulated and the proportion and 95% confidence interval (CI) determined.
Four patients (2 male, 2 female; age: mean 76, range 70 to 80 years) were diagnosed with AAION and 167 patients (117 male, 50 female; age: mean 57, range 30 to 93 years) with NAION. The proportion of patients presenting with AION found to have GCA was 2.3% (95% CI, 0.74 to 5.6%).
In the Arabic population, GCA is the cause of AION in 2.3% (95% CI, 0.74 to 5.6%) of patients. This is less than that reported for western (primarily Caucasian) populations, roughly 6%. This is consistent with previous assertions that the prevalence of GCA is relatively low in Saudi Arabia.
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