Ocular complications in patients with rheumatoid arthritis

Authors: V. Matušková 1;  Z. Fojtík 2
Authors‘ workplace: Oční klinika LF MU, FN, Brno 1;  Interní hematologická a onkologická klinika LF MU, FN, Brno 2
Published in: Čes. Revmatol., 23, 2015, No. 3, p. 83-90.
Category: Original Papers


The aim of this work was to evaluate the incidence of various ocular complications in patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and to assess the relationship with the positivity of rheumatoid factor and the stage of RA according to Steinbrocker´s classification.

The studied group consisted of 147 patients, 24 men and 123 women. The average age was 61.3 years (SD 14.5). Out of this group, 80 patients were seropositive (54.4%).

Patients with RA underwent a comprehensive ophthalmologic examination, and the stage of RA and the presence of RF were assessed. The statistical analysis was performed using chi-square (X2) for categorical variables for 2, 3 and 4 degrees of freedom.

Keratoconjunctivitis sicca was diagnosed in 75.5% of patients, a severe dry eye syndrome was detected in 38.8% of patients, corneal complications in 6.8% of patients, iridocyclitis in 3.4% of patients, scleritis in 1.4% of patients, episcleritis in 2.7% of patients, and intermediate uveitis in 2.0% of patients. We did not find any statistically significant association between the occurrence of ocular complications and the positivity of RF or the stage of RA.

Ocular complications belong to the extra-articular manifestations of rheumatoid arthritis. Based on our observations, the incidence of ocular complications is clearly not linked to the positivity of RF or the stage of RA. Even patients with mild rheumatoid arthritis can develop serious ocular complications.

Key words:
Ocular complications, rheumatoid arthritis, keratitis, dry eye syndrome, skleritis, episcleritis


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Dermatology & STDs Paediatric rheumatology Rheumatology
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