Causes of uveitis in children without juvenile idiopathic arthritis

Stephanie B. Engelhard, Asima Bajwa, Ashvini K. Reddy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Background: The purpose of this study was to report the demographics, disease characteristics, treatments, and visual outcomes of pediatric uveitis patients without juvenile idiopathic arthritis managed in a tertiary medical center. Methods: A retrospective, observational study was performed in pediatric uveitis patients without juvenile idiopathic arthritis and aged 0–18 years, who were seen at the University of Virginia from 1984 to 2014. Results: Thirty-nine pediatric uveitis patients (57 eyes) were identified. The patient population was 51.28% female, 51.28% Caucasian, and 33.33% African American. The mean age at diagnosis was 11.9 years. The mean duration of follow-up was 3.11 years. The mean number of visits to the clinic was 10.41. Of 57 eyes, 31 (54.39%) had anterior uveitis, 12 (21.05%) had intermediate uveitis, nine (15.79%) had posterior uveitis, and five (8.77%) had panuveitis. The leading diagnoses were traumatic uveitis (25.64%), undifferentiated anterior uveitis (17.95%), undifferentiated intermediate uveitis (15.38%), HLA-B27-associated anterior uveitis (7.69%), and herpetic anterior uveitis (7.69%). Systemic associations included sarcoidosis, ulcerative colitis, and psoriatic arthritis (n=3). The most common treatment modalities included local steroids (66.67%), systemic steroids (23.08%), and antimetabolites (20.51%). Ocular hypertension was found in five (12.82%) patients. Ocular surgery was performed in six (15.38%) patients. Mean best-corrected visual acuity (BCVA) at baseline across all anatomical locations was 0.458 logMAR, and was 0.411 logMAR at final follow-up. Mean BCVA improved during follow-up in all but the anterior uveitis group. The mean baseline intraocular pressure was 14.27 mmHg, and was 14.22 mmHg at final follow-up. Conclusion: Uveitis in childhood is a vision-threatening group of inflammatory disorders arising from numerous etiologies that vary geographically and historically. Because of the high burden of disease, the difficulty of making precise etiologic diagnoses, and the complicated management, it is imperative that affected children be referred to and closely monitored by uveitis specialists to prevent devastating ocular damage. This study found that BCVA and intraocular pressure did not vary significantly during follow-up, suggesting that close management by an ophthalmologist may prevent adverse visual outcomes, and highlighted the high prevalence of traumatic uveitis in children, which tends to have good visual outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1121-1128
Number of pages8
JournalClinical Ophthalmology
StatePublished - Jun 25 2015


  • Intraocular pressure
  • Pediatric
  • Uveitis
  • Visual acuity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology


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