FORT WORTH, Texas — Uveitis among young patients with oligoarticular juvenile idiopathic arthritis is often asymptomatic, but comes with a very high morbidity, which means rheumatology providers and nurses have to “make a decision” about their vigilance in screening for the disease, according to Kristen Lee, MD, of the New York University School of Medicine.
“Uveitis in this population is asymptomatic, meaning that if the kids don’t complain, you don’t see anything,” Lee told attendees at the Rheumatology Nurses Society Annual Conference. “So, you are going to have to make a decision about how vigilant you are going to be in screening them, because if you don’t screen them and intervene, they can lose vision.”
According to Lee, the prevalence of uveitis among patients with oligoarticular JIA is approximately 20%. Other risk factors include younger age at JIA onset – specifically younger than 4 years – being male, being antinuclear-antibody positive, severity of uveitis at presentation and shorter interval between arthritis and uveitis.
Due to the high morbidity and asymptomatic nature of uveitis among young patients with oligoarticular JIA, current guidelines call for screening every 3 months, Lee said.
“There have been very strict guidelines for really close observation for uveitis,” Lee said. “It has a very high morbidity, so the guidelines include regular visits and very high vigilance.” – by Jason Laday
Lee K. Inflammatory eye diseases. Presented at: Rheumatology Nurses Society Annual Conference; Aug. 8-11, 2018; Fort Worth, Texas.
Disclosure: Lee reports no relevant financial disclosures.