Purpose: To describe the use of a tarsoconjunctival pedicle flap for the repair of a large scleral melt in a patient with rheumatoid arthritis.
Methods: Case report and literature review.
Results: A 36-year-old woman with a history of rheumatoid arthritis presented to the Rocky Mountain Lions Eye Institute with a large scleral melt in the right eye. Ophthalmic examination revealed a visual acuity of 20/400 and a superior scleral melt measuring 15 x 30 mm. After instituting systemic immunosuppression, a tarsoconjunctival pedicle was used to provide tectonic support to the globe. At her 3-month postoperative visit, her vision improved to 20/30, and the scleral melt was completely epithelialized.
Conclusions: A tarsoconjunctival pedicle flap provides an excellent alternative to help restore scleral integrity in patients with severe autoimmune necrotizing scleritis.