Reduced retinal nerve fiber layer thickness and macular volume in pediatric multiple sclerosis

J Child Neurol. 2012 Dec;27(12):1517-23. doi: 10.1177/0883073812447683. Epub 2012 Jun 29.


Retinal atrophy is well known in adult-onset multiple sclerosis but remains unexplored in children. We aimed to determine retinal nerve fiber layer thickness and macular volume in pediatric patients, with and without optic neuritis and their relations with visual evoked potentials. We also examined macular volume changes at month 12. Retinal nerve fiber layer thickness of all quadrants and macular volume were measured in 28 relapsing remitting multiple sclerosis eyes and 30 control eyes using optical coherence tomography and were found reduced in patients compared with controls. This reduction was more prominent in eyes with longer time interval from optic neuritis. Retinal nerve fiber thickness was lower in eyes with delayed visual evoked potentials. Visual evoked potential amplitudes were reduced in affected eyes compared to patients without optic neuritis. Macular volume reduced nonsignificantly in patients at month 12. Retinal atrophy occurs in pediatric multiple sclerosis, and previous optic neuritis accelerates this atrophy.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Child
  • Evoked Potentials, Visual / physiology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Macula Lutea / pathology*
  • Male
  • Multiple Sclerosis / complications
  • Multiple Sclerosis / pathology*
  • Nerve Fibers / pathology*
  • Optic Neuritis / complications
  • Optic Neuritis / pathology
  • Pediatrics*
  • Photic Stimulation
  • Reaction Time / physiology
  • Retina / pathology*
  • Young Adult