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Amaurosis fugax and ocular infarction in adolescents and young adults.

Abstract
Because the cause and natural history of amaurosis fugax and ocular infarction are unknown in most younger patients, we reviewed the records of 83 patients who had become symptomatic before the age of 45. Cerebral transient ischemic attacks had occurred in 9 of these patients but no case of stroke was found. A striking feature of these patients was that 41% had headache or orbital pain accompanying their amaurotic spells and an additional 25.3% had severe headaches independent of the visual loss. Results of laboratory studies were rarely abnormal and echocardiography disclosed that only 1 patient had previously unknown heart disease. Mitral valve prolapse was detected in 6.5%, a figure similar to that expected for the general population. Of the original 83 patients, 42 were reexamined after a mean period of 5.8 years. None of the patients in this group had had a stroke, and the clinical status at follow-up was not found to correlate with the duration of the visual loss (amaurosis fugax versus ocular infarction), frequency (single versus recurrent episodes), sex, presence of headache or heart disease, cigarette smoking, use of oral contraceptives, or abnormal findings on echocardiograms or laboratory studies. We conclude that amaurosis fugax and ocular infarction occurring in the younger patient are probably associated with a more benign clinical course than that seen in older persons and that migraine is a likely cause for the episodes of visual loss in a majority of this group. Because of this, we believe that a conservative approach to the evaluation of such patients seems warranted.
AuthorsJ Tippin, J J Corbett, R E Kerber, E Schroeder, H S Thompson
JournalAnnals of neurology (Ann Neurol) Vol. 26 Issue 1 Pg. 69-77 (Jul 1989) ISSN: 0364-5134 [Print] UNITED STATES
PMID2774503 (Publication Type: Journal Article, Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't)
Topics
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Blindness (etiology, physiopathology)
  • Brain Diseases (complications, physiopathology)
  • Child
  • Eye (blood supply)
  • Female
  • Headache (complications, physiopathology)
  • Humans
  • Infarction (etiology, physiopathology)
  • Male
  • Middle Aged

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