Optic nerve and macular optical coherence tomography in recovered COVID-19 patients



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Burgos Blasco, Bárbara and Güemes Villahoz, Noemi and Vidal Villegas, Beatriz and Martínez de la Casa, Jose Maria and Donate López, Juan and Martín Sánchez, Francisco Javier and González Armengol, Juan Jorge and Porta Etessam, Jesús and Rodríguez Martin, José Luis and García Feijoo, Julián (2021) Optic nerve and macular optical coherence tomography in recovered COVID-19 patients. European journal of ophthalmology . ISSN 1120-6721, ESSN: 1724-6016

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1177/11206721211001019


Purpose: To investigate the peripapillary retinal nerve fiber layer thickness (RNFLT), macular RNFLT, ganglion cell layer (GCL), and inner plexiform layer (IPL) thickness in recovered COVID-19 patients compared to controls.
Methods: Patients previously diagnosed with COVID-19 were included, while healthy patients formed the historic control group. All patients underwent an ophthalmological examination, including macular and optic nerve optical coherence tomography. In the case group, socio-demographic data, medical history, and neurological symptoms were collected.
Results: One hundred sixty patients were included; 90 recovered COVID-19 patients and 70 controls. COVID-19 patients presented increases in global RNFLT (mean difference 4.3; CI95% 0.8 to 7.7), nasal superior (mean difference 6.9; CI95% 0.4 to 13.4), and nasal inferior (mean difference 10.2; CI95% 2.4 to 18.1) sectors of peripapillary RNFLT. Macular RNFL showed decreases in COVID-19 patients in volume (mean difference −0.05; CI95% −0.08 to −0.02), superior inner (mean difference −1.4; CI95% −2.5 to −0.4), nasal inner (mean difference −1.1; CI95% −1.8 to −0.3), and nasal outer (mean difference −4.7; CI95% −7.0 to −2.4) quadrants. COVID-19 patients presented increased GCL thickness in volume (mean difference 0.04; CI95% 0.01 to 0.07), superior outer (mean difference 2.1; CI95% 0.8 to 3.3), nasal outer (mean difference 2.5; CI95% 1.1 to 4.0), and inferior outer (mean difference1.2; CI95% 0.1 to 2.4) quadrants. COVID-19 patients with anosmia and ageusia presented an increase in peripapillary RNFLT and macular GCL compared to patients without these symptoms.
Conclusions: SARS-CoV-2 may affect the optic nerve and cause changes in the retinal layers once the infection has resolved.

Item Type:Article
Additional Information:

Date received: 22 January 2021; accepted: 14 February 2021; First Published March 15, 2021.

Uncontrolled Keywords:COVID; Coronavirus; Optical coherence tomography; Optic nerve
Subjects:Medical sciences > Medicine > Communicable diseases
Medical sciences > Medicine > Ophtalmology
Medical sciences > Optics > Eyes anatomy
ID Code:64946
Deposited On:22 Apr 2021 16:25
Last Modified:23 Apr 2021 07:35

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