Vitrectomy for the Diagnosis and Management of Uveitis of Unknown Cause

Ron Margolis, Oswaldo F.M. Brasil, Careen Y. Lowder, Rishi P. Singh, Peter K. Kaiser, Scott D. Smith, Victor L. Perez, Christine Sonnie, Jonathan E. Sears

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

48 Scopus citations


Purpose: To determine the diagnostic yield of tests commonly used for vitreous fluid analysis in eyes with suspected intraocular infection or malignancy. Design: Noncomparative interventional case series. Participants: Forty-four consecutive patients (45 eyes) treated from 1998 through 2006 with posterior segment inflammation who underwent pars plana vitrectomy for diagnostic purposes. Intervention: Vitreous specimens obtained via pars plana vitrectomy were analyzed by microbiologic culture, cytologic analysis, and flow cytometry. Main Outcome Measures: Diagnostic yield and sensitivity of each test performed on vitreous specimens and visual outcomes of eyes that underwent diagnostic vitrectomy (DVx). Results: Preoperative diagnoses were infection in 15 eyes and malignancy in 30 eyes. Overall, vitreous analysis identified a specific cause in 9 (20%) of 45 eyes. The overall sensitivity of DVx was 63.6%. The sensitivities of individual tests were: culture, 50%; cytologic analysis, 66.7%; and flow cytometry, 83.3%. The yields of diagnostic tests were: culture, 5.7%; cytologic analysis, 14.3%; and flow cytometry, 20.6%. Final diagnoses were infection in 6 eyes, malignancy in 9 eyes, and idiopathic in 30 eyes. Mean visual acuity improved significantly in the first 6 months after DVx. Visual acuity improved in 60% of eyes, with 37.8% of eyes improving by 3 lines or more. Conclusions: Analysis of vitreous fluid by widely available tests is useful in identifying intraocular infection or malignancy. Most patients experienced a substantial improvement in vision.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1893-1897
Number of pages5
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology


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