Ocular tuberculosis

Curr Opin Ophthalmol. 2000 Dec;11(6):443-8. doi: 10.1097/00055735-200012000-00010.


Despite the use of highly sensitive molecular tools, such as polymerase chain reaction, for the detection of Mycobacterium tuberculosis, ocular tuberculosis remains a subject of controversy. The diagnosis is often presumptive in the absence of ocular biopsies. Choroiditis is the most common ocular manifestation in patients with pulmonary and systemic tuberculosis. Indocyanine green angiography seems to be an interesting method to determine choroidal involvement. PCR technology is proposed to evaluate the presence of the tubercule bacillus DNA in ocular fluids and tissues when conventional microbiologic methods fail to confirm a bacterial etiology. Most of the presumed cases of ocular tuberculosis should be treated with associations of antituberculous drug, especially when a systemic steroid regimen is required.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antitubercular Agents / therapeutic use
  • Choroid / pathology
  • Choroiditis / diagnosis
  • Choroiditis / drug therapy
  • Choroiditis / etiology
  • DNA, Bacterial / analysis
  • Drug Therapy, Combination
  • Fluorescein Angiography
  • Fundus Oculi
  • Glucocorticoids / therapeutic use
  • Humans
  • Mycobacterium tuberculosis / genetics
  • Mycobacterium tuberculosis / isolation & purification
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Prognosis
  • Tuberculosis, Ocular* / complications
  • Tuberculosis, Ocular* / diagnosis
  • Tuberculosis, Ocular* / drug therapy
  • Tuberculosis, Ocular* / epidemiology


  • Antitubercular Agents
  • DNA, Bacterial
  • Glucocorticoids