Psychological morbidity in Leber’s hereditary optic neuropathy depends on phenotypic, social, economic, and genetic factors
Josef Finsterer,1 Sinda Zarrouk-Mahjoub2
1Krankenanstalt Rudolfstiftung, Vienna, Austria; 2University of Tunis El Manar, Genomics Platform, Pasteur Institute of Tunis, Tunis, Tunisia
We have read with interest the article by Garcia et al1 about the effect of visual impairment on psychological well-being with regard to mood, interpersonal interactions, and career-related goals.1 Among the 103 Leber’s hereditary optic neuropathy (LHON) patients, half became depressed with negative impacts on interpersonal relations and career goals. At diagnosis, older age corresponded to higher depression prevalence than young age. We have the following comments and concerns.
Giancarlo A Garcia,1,2 Matin Khoshnevis,1,3 Jesse Gale,1,4 Starleen E Frousiakis,1,5 Tiffany J Hwang,1,6 Lissa Poincenot,1 Rustum Karanjia,1,7–9 David Baron,6 Alfredo A Sadun1,7
1Doheny Eye Institute, Los Angeles, 2University of California, Irvine School of Medicine, Irvine, CA, 3Department of Ophthalmology, Temple University, Philadelphia, PA, USA; 4Wellington School of Medicine and Health Sciences, University of Otago, Wellington, New Zealand; 5Department of Ophthalmology, New York Medical College, Valhalla, NY, 6Department of Psychiatry & The Behavioral Sciences, Keck School of Medicine, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, 7Department of Ophthalmology, Doheny Eye Centers, David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, CA, USA; 8Department of Ophthalmology, University of Ottawa, 9Ottawa Hospital Health Research Institute, Ottawa, ON, Canada
We appreciate Dr Finsterer and Dr Zarrouk-Mahjoub’s interest in our article1 and regret that many of their questions cannot be addressed by the nature of our study. Their most salient inquiries were as follows: did mutation affects visual prognosis, risk of vision loss, or psychological morbidity? Were systemic health associations associated with psychological morbidity? Did idebenone therapy affects psychological morbidity? Did the recency of vision loss affects psychological morbidity? Our study was not designed to collect data on these questions.
View the original paper by Garcia and colleagues.
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