The importance of an ophthalmologic examination in patients with juvenile idiopathic arthritis Importancia de la evaluación oftalmológica en pacientes con artritis idiopática juvenil
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© 2014 Elsevier España, S.L.U. Uveitis occurs within the first year of arthritis onset in 73% of patients with juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA) considered at risk. The intraocular inflammation is characterized by an insidious onset and a silent and chronic clinical course capable of producing significant visual loss due to complications such as: cataract formation, secondary glaucoma, maculopathy and optic neuropathy. The absence of initial signs and symptoms, along with a deficient ophthalmic monitoring produce a delay in diagnosis with serious consequences. It has been estimated that 47% of JIA patients at risk for developing uveitis are legally blind (20/200 or worse) at least in one eye at the time of their first visit to the ophthalmologist. To reduce ocular complications and improve their visual outcome, it is necessary that rheumatologists refer all patients recently diagnosed (within the first month) with JIA for an ophthalmic evaluation, and maintain periodical follow-up visits based on classification and risk category of the disease.