Ocular Gnathostomiasis Presenting as Branch Retinal Artery Occlusion

Ocul Immunol Inflamm. 2022 Apr 3;30(3):619-622. doi: 10.1080/09273948.2020.1820532. Epub 2020 Sep 29.


Purpose: To report a case of ocular Gnathostomiasis presenting as branch retinal artery occlusion.

Method: Observational case report.

Result: A 22-year-old Asian woman presented to her ophthalmologist with redness, tearing, and decreased vision in her left eye. Examination revealed anterior uveitis and branch retinal artery occlusion associated with both intra-retinal and vitreous hemorrhage. The patient was treated with topical corticosteroids and cycloplegics. After 3 weeks, she presented in our emergency, with further decrease in vision and worsening pain in the left eye. Slit lamp examination revealed a brown colored live worm on the posterior corneal surface, anterior uveitis, multiple iris holes, and vitreous cells. Indirect ophthalmoscopy showed focal retinal hemorrhages, subretinal tracts, and vitreous hemorrhage. Surgical removal of the worm from anterior chamber was done immediately.

Conclusion: Branched retinal artery occlusion with intraretinal and vitreous hemorrhage, panuveitis, and multiple iris holes may suggest the presence of an intraocular parasite.

Keywords: Branched retinal artery occlusion; Gnathostoma spinigerum; inflammatory BRAO; intraocular parasite; ocular Gnathostomiasis.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Anterior Chamber
  • Female
  • Gnathostomiasis* / parasitology
  • Humans
  • Retinal Artery Occlusion* / diagnosis
  • Retinal Artery Occlusion* / drug therapy
  • Uveitis, Anterior*
  • Vitreous Hemorrhage