• Emerging Arthropod-Borne Infectious Uveitis


    Due to ever-increasing world travel, infectious diseases that used to be confined to particular geographic areas are becoming more global, said Emmett T. Cunningham Jr., MD, PhD, MPH, during the infectious uveitis symposium on Monday morning. He discussed 3 emerging arthropod-borne infections and their symptoms.

    West Nile virus.
    Of the 3, this is the most commonly seen in the United States. Most patients are asymptomatic, but the hallmark systemic sign is encephalitis. Ocular manifestations are anterior chamber inflammation and telltale multifocal chorioretinitis that often presents in a curvilinear pattern.

    Dengue virus. Texas has the highest rates of dengue in the United States. Systemic signs include fever and may progress to hemorrhagic fever shock syndrome. The most common ocular signs are hemorrhage seen in the subconjunctiva and retina, as well as active yellow-white lesions seen with fluorescein angiography.

    Chikungunya. This disease, whose name means “to walk bent over” in the Makonde language, originated in East Africa. The most characteristic systemic sign is arthritis as well as back pain. Anterior chamber inflammation is common, with or without high IOP.

    Dr. Cunningham also said that many ocular symptoms may overlap in these diseases, and it is important to also take systemic signs and travel history into account when making a diagnosis. —Keng Jin Lee

    Financial disclosures. Dr. Cunningham has no financial disclosures.

    Disclosure key. C = Consultant/Advisor; E = Employee; L = Speakers bureau; O = Equity owner; P = Patents/Royalty; S = Grant support.