An Update on COVID-19 Related Ophthalmic Manifestations

Ocul Immunol Inflamm. 2021 Apr 7;1-6. doi: 10.1080/09273948.2021.1896008. Online ahead of print.

Abstract

Purpose: To summarize ophthalmic manifestations of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) reported in the literature thus far.Methods: The PubMed database was systematically searched through October 24, 2020, to identify relevant articles using the following search terms: ("COVID-19" OR "SARS-CoV-2") AND ("eye" OR "ophthalmology" OR "retina" OR "retinal findings" OR "cornea" OR "conjunctiva"). Only articles published in English were included in this review.Results: The reported prevalence of ophthalmic manifestations is generally low, but correlates positively with the severity of the disease. Most commonly reported ocular manifestations are conjunctivitis, conjunctival hyperemia and chemosis. Retinal findings include microhemorrhages and flame-shaped hemorrhages, cotton wool spots, dilated veins, and tortuous vessels.Conclusion: Considering the COVID-19 cases have reached pandemic dimensions and are surging, yet again, it is of utmost importance to determine its ophthalmic manifestations and prevent their vision threatening complications. Further studies are warranted to establish whether the retinal findings appear due to the COVID-19 or are an incidental finding in patients with a preexisting diabetic or hypertensive retinopathy.

Keywords: COVID-19; SARS-CoV-2; eye; ophthalmology; retina; review.