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Ophthalmologic Emergencies

  • Stella K. KimEmail author
Part of the MD Anderson Cancer Care Series book series (MDCCS)

Abstract

True ocular emergencies are ocular chemical burn and acute angle-closure glaucoma, both of which lead to blindness in seconds to minutes without intervention. These two conditions are not commonly seen in the emergency centers of cancer hospitals and are no more common in cancer patients than in the general population. Ocular emergencies in cancer patients are typically related to infections given the obvious immune status of this population. Ocular surface disease, which is typically not an emergency and is common owing to cancer treatments such as chemotherapy, irradiation, and stem cell transplantation, can lead to ocular emergencies, such as corneal perforation. However, symptoms alone do not often reflect the severity of serious ocular conditions. The spectrum of ocular symptoms reported by cancer patients may include ocular irritation, photophobia, redness, discharge, eye pain, double vision, and the most innocuous symptom of blurred vision. Each of these symptoms may represent relatively benign ocular disorders, ranging from cancer treatment-related dry eyes, which can be successfully treated with topical lubrication, to visually disabling ocular and orbital infections, which may lead to irreversible vision loss. This chapter describes the spectrum of ocular emergencies in patients at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.

Keywords

Ocular toxicity Cancer treatment side effects 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Ophthalmology and Visual ScienceThe University of Texas Health Science Center at HoustonHoustonUSA

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