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Clinical manifestations of patients with intraocular inflammation and positive QuantiFERON-TB gold in-tube test in a country nonendemic for tuberculosis.

Am. J. Ophthalmol. 2014, vol. 157, issue 4

PURPOSE

To evaluate clinical manifestations of patients with uveitis and scleritis of unknown origin and positive QuantiFERON-TB Gold In-Tube test (quantiferon) in a country not endemic for tuberculosis.

DESIGN

Multicenter retrospective cohort study.

METHODS

Retrospective review of the clinical, laboratory, and imaging data of 77 patients. Main outcome measures consisted of ocular and systemic features as well as results of laboratory examinations.

RESULTS

Out of all, 60 of 71 (85%) were living for at least 6 months in tuberculosis-endemic regions. Location of uveitis was variable; posterior uveitis (29/77; 38%) was the most frequent. Two clinical entities were commonly noted: retinal occlusive vasculitis (21/77; 27%) and serpiginoid choroiditis (11/77; 14%). Antituberculosis treatment was completed in 32 patients; 29 of them (91%) achieved complete remission. Mean quantiferon level was 7.5 U/mL; 71% had values above 2 U/mL and 41% above 10 U/mL. We observed no associations between quantiferon levels and clinical and/or imaging features. Previous tuberculosis infection was diagnosed in 5 of 77 patients (6.5%), while hilar/mediastinal lymphadenopathy was found in 25 of 76 patients (33%). Of these, 12 were consistent with the diagnosis of sarcoidosis, 9 were typical for (prior) tuberculosis, and 4 were compatible with both diagnoses.

CONCLUSIONS

Ocular features of patients with idiopathic uveitis and positive quantiferon were diverse, but retinal occlusive vasculitis and serpiginoid choroiditis were common. The quantiferon levels were usually highly elevated and 33% of patients exhibited lymphadenopathy, suggesting frequently the diagnosis of sarcoidosis. Ocular inflammation reacted favorably to antituberculosis treatment, although only a small minority had documented (prior) tuberculosis.

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