Branch retinal-artery obstruction: a review of 201 eyes

Ann Ophthalmol. 1989 Mar;21(3):103-7.


A study of 187 patients (201 eyes) with branch retinal-artery occlusion (BRAO) was done to determine the etiology, natural history, and treatment of this disorder. On follow-up, almost 90% of the patients had visual acuity of 20/40 or better. The rest had poor visual acuities initially. The patient population was divided into three groups according to treatment. Group I included 65 patients treated aggressively with mechanical and pharmaceutic measures to reduce intraocular pressure and with anti-platelet drugs. Group II was composed of 81 patients treated only with antiplatelet agents given chronically. Group III (41 patients) received no treatment and represented the control group. No statistically significant difference in visual outcome was found on comparison of these three groups of patients. In this study we observed that 98% of the BRAO cases involved the temporal arteries. Emboli were documented in 125 eyes (62%). Systemic hypertension was common (132 patients or 71%). Although BRAO appears to be a relatively benign disease, its association with severe systemic conditions and documented increase in patient mortality suggests the need for careful evaluation by ophthalmologists.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Embolism / complications
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hypertension / complications
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Platelet Aggregation Inhibitors / therapeutic use
  • Retinal Artery Occlusion / etiology
  • Retinal Artery Occlusion / physiopathology
  • Retinal Artery Occlusion / therapy*
  • Temporal Arteries
  • Visual Acuity


  • Platelet Aggregation Inhibitors