The fluocinolone acetonide (Retisert; Bausch & Lomb) surgical implant can prevent blindness in cases of sympathetic ophthalmia (SO), according to research at the University of Iowa, US.
James C. Folk, MD and colleagues conducted a retrospective non-comparative case study of eight SO patients implanted with the Retisert and followed-up for up to one year.
By the final follow-up, vision had been maintained or had improved in all patients. All patients reduced their dependence on anti-inflammatory medication significantly, although two later recommenced oral immunosuppressive treatment.
The researchers concluded that, as use of the implant is effective at controlling inflammation, it can prevent the need for life-long systemic immunosuppression in SO patients.