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Can J Ophthalmol. 2006 Dec;41(6):741-6.

Ocular manifestations of dengue fever in an East Indian epidemic.

Author information

1
Christian Medical College and Hospital, Ludhiana, Punjab, India. harpreet_kapoor@hotmail.com

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The incidence and geographic distribution of dengue has increased dramatically in recent years. Previously, ocular findings in dengue fever were considered rare. We report a spectrum of ocular manifestations of this potentially fatal disease and its association with laboratory parameters.

METHODS:

134 patients hospitalized with a diagnosis of dengue fever during an epidemic were included. Systemic and ophthalmic examinations were completed on all patients.

RESULTS:

The mean age was 31.3 years and 63.4% were males. All patients presented with fever. Six (4.5%) patients had retrobulbar pain and none of the patients presented with any visual complaints. Ocular findings were present in 54 (40.3%) patients. Subconjunctival haemorrhage was the commonest eye finding seen in 50 patients, of whom 84% had characteristic petechial type of haemorrhages. Fundus findings present in 10 (7.5%) patients included dilatation and tortuosity of vessels, superficial retinal haemorrhages, cotton-wool spots, and hard exudates; the macula, however, was spared in all patients. Only 6 of the patients with posterior segment involvement returned for follow-up examination and it was found that retinal changes had resolved without any specific treatment within 2 to 8 weeks time. Of all laboratory parameters evaluated, marked thrombocytopenia (platelet count <50,000/microL) emerged to be significantly associated with ocular haemorrhage.

INTERPRETATION:

Multiple subconjunctival haemorrhages, especially petechial type, are a common manifestation of dengue infection. Dengue fever patients with marked thrombocytopenia are predisposed to spontaneous ocular haemorrhages.

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PMID:
17224957
DOI:
10.3129/i06-069
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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