Thickness changes in foveal, macular, and ganglion cell complex regions associated with Behçet uveitis during remission

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Abstract

Purpose:

To investigate foveal, macular, and ganglion cell complex (GCC) thickness in patients with Behçet uveitis during remission.

Methods:

We included patients with panuveitis attacks caused by Behçet disease. Patients were taking immunosuppressive therapy and had no active ocular inflammation. After complete ophthalmologic examination, optical coherence tomography (OCT) was performed with a macula multi-cross protocol. The OCT images were evaluated for structural changes. Patients with no structural changes were imaged with the macula map protocol to obtain parafoveal and perifoveal macular and GCC thicknesses. Patients were compared to an age-matched control group with the Mann-Whitney U test. In correlation analyses, we examined relationships among visual acuity (logMAR), disease duration, and the number of attacks.

Results:

The study included 27 eyes of 21 patients (mean age 38.14 ± 9.18 years; mean disease duration 65.4 ± 74.6 months; mean number of attacks 2.5 ± 1.9). The OCT showed foveal thicknesses of 260.29 ± 34.17 μm in patients and 280.58 ± 19.54 μm in controls (p = 0.010). Foveal thickness was not related to visual acuity (p = 0.485), but was negatively correlated to disease duration (p = 0.016) and number of attacks (p = 0.001). Patients and controls showed similar macular thickness in parafoveal quadrants (p = 0.294, p = 0.096, p = 0.88, p = 0.111) and perifoveal quadrants (p = 0.241, p = 0.517, p = 0.53288, p = 0.241). Patient parafoveal GCCs were significantly thinner than in controls in the inferior temporal quadrant (p = 0.041), but not in other quadrants (p = 0.867, p = 0.832, p = 0.390). Patient perifoveal GCCs were significantly thicker than in controls in the superior and inferior temporal quadrants (p = 0.008, p = 0.008) and somewhat thicker (but not significantly) in the superior and inferior nasal quadrants (p = 0.052, p = 0.138).

Conclusions:

Patients with Behçet uveitis in remission showed insignificant decreases in foveal and macular thickness and significant increases in perifoveal GCC thickness compared to controls. The increased perifoveal GCC thickness may result from macular ischemia persisting in remission.

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