Literature systematic review on the ophthalmological side effects of interferons

Arq Bras Oftalmol. Jul-Aug 2011;74(4):306-10. doi: 10.1590/s0004-27492011000400017.


Interferons alpha and beta have been used worldwide for a few decades, altering the natural history of several severe diseases including hepatitis C, cancer and immune-mediated conditions such as multiple sclerosis. The adverse events profile of interferons is well established, but only isolated reports of ophthalmological complications of interferon therapy have been published. The objective of this study was to carry out a literature systematic review on the subject, bringing to light the need for careful ophthalmological monitoring of patients undergoing interferon treatment. Nearly 500 cases of ophthalmological complications related to interferon have been reported. The most frequent findings were soft exudates, hemorrhages and retina ischemia.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Antineoplastic Agents / adverse effects*
  • Antiviral Agents / adverse effects*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Interferon-alpha / adverse effects*
  • Interferon-beta / adverse effects*
  • Male
  • Retinal Diseases / chemically induced*


  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Antiviral Agents
  • Interferon-alpha
  • Interferon-beta