For patients with chronic anterior uveitis, certain risk factors, including their age and prior ocular surgeries, may increase their chances of having the condition longer, a study in Ophthalmology reports. The investigation, which looked at the incidence of medication-free remission, also found one-third of subjects achieved remission within five years.

The retrospective cohort study reviewed charts of patients who had anterior uveitis for longer than three months and were followed at several US tertiary uveitis care facilities. Remission was defined as inactive uveitis off treatment at all visits spanning at least 90 days. For patients who didn’t return for follow-up after 90 days, remission was defined as remaining inactive without receiving suppressive medications at all of the last visits.

The study included 2,795 eyes of 1,634 patients with chronic anterior uveitis. The researchers reported the cumulative medication-free, person-year remission incidence within five years was 32.7%.

Investigators noted the following factors were tied to a longer disease duration: younger age, bilateral uveitis, longer duration of uveitis, prior cataract and glaucoma surgery, presence of keratic precipitates and synechiae and systemic diagnoses of juvenile idiopathic arthritis and spondyloarthropathy.

Eye care practitioners managing uveitis patients with these additional factors should take into account the higher probability of a longer disease course, the investigators suggested. 

Sobrin L, Pistilli M, Dreger K, et al. Factors predictive of remission of chronic anterior uveitis. Ophthalmology. November 28, 2019. [Epub ahead of print].