In vivo confocal microscopy of fleck dystrophy

Cornea. 1999 Nov;18(6):658-60. doi: 10.1097/00003226-199911000-00005.


Purpose: To use in vivo confocal microscopy to evaluate corneas with fleck dystrophy.

Methods: Both eyes of three patients with corneal fleck dystrophy were examined with a scanning slit confocal microscope. Corneal epithelium, stroma, and endothelium were evaluated, as well as the basal epithelial and stromal nerves.

Results: The epithelium did not show any anomalies, but the basal nerves showed hyperreflective inclusions. Throughout the entire stroma, hyperreflective dots of various shapes were seen. These consisted mostly of spherical matter with a diameter of 3-5 microm and were sometimes enclosed in cyst-like structures. The majority of the stromal cells and stromal nerves appeared normal. The endothelial cell layer was unaffected.

Conclusion: In vivo confocal microscopy demonstrates previously unreported inclusions in the basal nerves of fleck dystrophy corneas. In addition to this new finding, the study confirms earlier histopathologic reports, demonstrating accumulation of pathologic material in the stromal cells.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cornea / innervation
  • Corneal Dystrophies, Hereditary / pathology*
  • Corneal Stroma / pathology
  • Endothelium, Corneal / pathology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Inclusion Bodies / pathology
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Male
  • Microscopy, Confocal*
  • Middle Aged
  • Nervous System / pathology