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Evaluation of Central and Peripheral Corneal Thicknesses in Patients with Systemic Lupus Erythematosus

Authors Eissa IM, Nassar GA, Arfeen SA, Dahab AA

Received 14 October 2019

Accepted for publication 17 December 2019

Published 28 February 2020 Volume 2020:14 Pages 589—595


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Scott Fraser

Iman M Eissa, Ghada A Nassar, Shaimaa A Arfeen, Ahmed A Dahab

Department of Ophthalmology, Cairo University, Giza, Egypt

Correspondence: Ahmed A Dahab
Cairo University, 27 Madinat Al-Mabouthin, Giza, Egypt
Tel +966559231865

Purpose: To evaluate the corneal pachymetric and topographic parameters of systemic Lupus Erythematosus (SLE) patients using Dual Scheimpflug Imaging.
Methods: This observational cross-sectional controlled study included the right eye of 30 SLE patients and 30 age-matched controls. Corneal measurements were acquired by dual Scheimpflug imaging including anterior and posterior corneal curvatures, central, mid-peripheral corneal thickness (measured at the 5 mm zone) and peripheral pachymetry (measured at the 7 mm zone). SLE disease activity index (SLEDAI) was calculated and correlated with corneal pachymetry.
Results: SLE patients had significantly thicker corneal periphery than controls. Mean central corneal pachymetry was 530.4± 27.3 microns (SD) in SLE and 547.5± 31.5 microns (SD) in control group, p = 0.032. The corneal periphery – except superiorly – was significantly thicker in SLE patients than controls (p ˂0.001). Nasal peripheral corneal thickness positively correlated with disease activity index SLEDAI (p=0.03).
Conclusion: SLE patients present with thicker corneal periphery than controls characteristically sparing the superior quadrant. Possible corneal photosensitivity leading to peripheral immune complex deposition as well as flatter posterior corneal surface at the periphery are proposed explanations for these findings.

Keywords: cornea, corneal pachymetry, corneal topography, SLEDAI score, systemic lupus erythematosus

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