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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 68  |  Issue : 9  |  Page : 1881-1886

Clinical manifestations and outcomes of ocular syphilis in Asian Indian population: Analysis of cases presenting to a tertiary referral center

1 Smt Kannuri Santhamma Center for Vitreoretinal Diseases, L V Prasad Eye Institute, KAR Campus, Hyderabad, Telangana, India
2 Vitreoretina and Uveitis Service, L V Prasad Eye Institute, GMRV Campus, Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh, India
3 Vitreoretina and Uveitis Service, L V Prasad Eye Institute, MTC Campus, Bhubaneswar, Odisha, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Hrishikesh Kaza
LV Prasad Eye Institute, GMRV Campus, Hanumanthawaka Junction, Visakhapatnam - 530 040, Andhra Pradesh
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijo.IJO_809_20

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Purpose: To describe disease manifestations and outcomes of ocular syphilis in Asian Indian population. Methods: Retrospective analysis of patients diagnosed with ocular syphilis at a tertiary referral center in India. Demographics, history, extraocular and ocular manifestations, ocular and systemic investigations, treatment and visual acuity outcomes were noted. All patients were diagnosed after necessary laboratory investigations including HIV ELISA (Human immunodeficiency virus, enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay), VDRL (venereal disease research laboratory), and TPHA (treponema pallidum hemagglutination). Results: Totally, 20 patients with mean age at presentation 38.25 ± 9.76 were analyzed. 9/20 patients had bilateral involvement. 8/20 had concurrent HIV at presentation with an average CD4 counts of 592.25 ± 411.34 cells/microliter. The mean duration of symptoms at time of presentation was 15.45 ± 35.15 weeks. VDRL test was reactive in 45% (9/20) patients whereas, all patients had a reactive TPHA test. Clinical manifestations included outer retinal placoid chorioretinitis lesions (8/20, 40%), followed by retinitis mimicking acute retinal necrosis as the second most common phenotype (4/20, 20%). Other presenting manifestations noted were panuveitis, miliary retinitis lesions, retinal vasculitis, intermediate uveitis, and anterior uveitis. The clinical phenotypes in immunocompromised included panuveitis, acute retinal necrosis and isolated anterior uveitis. Mean follow up duration was 6.32 ± 6.15 months. An improvement in mean best corrected visual acuity (BCVA) of (0.63 LogMAR, approximately 6 Snellen lines, P < 0.02) was noted at last follow-up. Conclusion: Phenotypic manifestations of ocular syphilis are varied. Non-treponemal tests like VDRL may be unreliable when compared with treponemal tests in diagnosing ocular syphilis. Syphilitic uveitis is considered equivalent to neurosyphilis and is treated similar to neurosyphilis.

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