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Glob Health Med ; 2(6): 395-397, 2020 Dec 31.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-976743


Ocular complications of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) do not essentially cause serious visual loss. However, due to the characteristics of this disease, delays in diagnosis and treatment in hospitalized patients may leave them with serious visual impairment. If conjunctivitis is suspected, ophthalmological follow-up is needless because it is expected spontaneous healing. Diplopia is often complicated for extra-ocular neurological findings and need neurological consults. Ophthalmologists should be consulted for ocular surface disease, high intraocular pressure, and ocular inflammation that may cause visual loss if patients complain of blurred vision, visual loss, and ocular pain. The problem is unconscious patients with risk of developing high intraocular pressure or keratitis. An ophthalmologist should be consulted as soon as possible if eye redness or pupil abnormalities appear in these patients. We developed a flowchart for ophthalmic consultations in hospitalized patients with COVID-19, for facilities where an ophthalmologist is not always present, and for third or fourth waves or, a pandemic of another infectious disease.

J Ophthalmol ; 2020: 4827304, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-788242


The novel pandemic coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), caused by the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), has challenged the medical community. While diagnostic and therapeutic efforts have been focused on respiratory complications of the disease, several ocular implications have also emerged. SARS-CoV-2 RNA has been found in tears of the infected patients, and reports suggest that the ocular surface could serve as a portal of entry and a reservoir for viral transmission. Clinically, COVID-19 has been associated with mild conjunctivitis, which can be the first and only symptom of the disease. Subtle retinal changes like hyperreflective lesions in the inner layers on optical coherence tomography (OCT), cotton-wool spots, and microhemorrhages have also been reported. In addition, COVID-19 has been associated with an increased incidence of systemic diseases like diabetes mellitus and Kawasaki disease, which are particularly relevant for ophthalmologists due to their potentially severe ocular manifestations. Several treatment strategies are currently under investigation for COVID-19, but none of them have been proved to be safe and effective to date. Intensive care unit patients, due to risk factors like invasive mechanical ventilation, prone position, and multiresistant bacterial exposure, may develop ocular complications like ocular surface disorders, secondary infections, and less frequently acute ischemic optic neuropathy and intraocular pressure elevation. Among the array of drugs that have shown positive results, the use of hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine has raised a concern due to their well-known retinal toxic effects. However, the risk of retinal toxicity with short-term high-dose use of antimalarials is still unknown. Ocular side effects have also been reported with other investigational drugs like lopinavir-ritonavir, interferons, and interleukin-1 and interleukin-6 inhibitors. The aim of this review was to summarize ophthalmological implications of SARS-CoV-2 infection to serve as a reference for eye care and other physicians for prompt diagnosis and management.