Background Uveitis is a common manifestation of rheumatic diseases with a broad spectrum of clinical presentation. It can be acute or chronic, affect any part of the uveal tract, can occur before or after the diagnosis of the associated rheumatic condition and can progress with severe complications. In Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA) it tipically involves the anterior chamber, is frequently oligosymptomathic and carries a high rate of complications.
Objectives Analyze the course and the development of uveitis associated with rheumatic diseases in outpatients of the Rheumatic Clinic of Hospital Universitário Clementino Fraga Filho (HUCFF) at Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro between 2000 and 2010.
Methods We conducted a retrospective study based on review of medical records of 37 patients in the Rheumatology Clinic of the HUCFF. The selected patients had a previous diagnosis of uveitis and were enrolled to our service between 2000 and 2010.
Results Twenty-six patients (70,3%) presented with a rheumatic disease, while 11 (29,7%) patients had isolated uveits. The most frequent diagnosis was JIA (56,8%), followed by idiopathic uveitis (29,7%) and the spondyloarthritis was diagnosed in 8,1%. In most cases, the uveitis presented in the course of the underlying disease (56,8%), as it was the involvement of the anterior chamber of the eye (70,3%). Of these 37 patients, there were a total of 57 affected eyes and 92% had a chronic presentation. The presence of antinuclear antibodies (ANA) was associated with higher frequency of uveitis and most patients with positive ANA developed complications (65%). The most frequent complications were cataract (30.2%) and posterior synechiae (13.2%). All patients who were on biological therapy presented some complication, what could be explained by the greater severity of uveitis in patients who require the use of these medications.
Conclusions Juvenile idiopathic arthritis-related uveitis accounts for the majority of identifiable causes of childhood onset uveitis. The characteristics of uveitis associated with rheumatic diseases observed in this study were similar to those found by other authors. The rate and spectrum of vision threatening complications of pediatric uveitis are significant and the authors emphasize the importance of regular eye evaluation in rheumatic diseases.
Disclosure of Interest None Declared