Occurrence and Risk Factors for Macular Edema in Patients with Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis-Associated Uveitis

J Clin Med. 2021 Sep 29;10(19):4513. doi: 10.3390/jcm10194513.


Purpose: To analyze occurrence and risk factors for macular edema (ME) in juvenile idiopathic arthritis-associated uveitis (JIA-U).

Methods: Retrospective analysis of patients with JIA-U at a tertiary referral uveitis center between 2000 and 2019. Epidemiological data and clinical findings before ME onset were evaluated.

Results: Out of 245 patients, ME developed in 41 (18%) of the 228 JIA-U patients for whom data documentation was complete during the follow-up (mean 4.0 ± 3.8 years). Risk factors (univariable logistic regression analysis) at baseline for subsequent ME onset included older age at initial documentation at institution (hazard ratio, HR 1.19, p < 0.0001), longer duration of uveitis at initial documentation (HR 1.17, p < 0.0001), worse best-corrected visual acuity (BCVA; HR 2.49, p < 0.0001), lower intraocular pressure (IOP; HR 0.88, p < 0.01), band keratopathy (HR 2.29, p < 0.01), posterior synechiae (HR 2.55, p < 0.01), epiretinal membrane formation (HR 6.19, p < 0.0001), optic disc swelling (HR 2.81, p < 0.01), and cataract (HR 4.24, p < 0.0001). Older age at initial documentation at institution (HR 1.55, p < 0.001), worse BCVA (HR 28.56, p < 0.001), and higher laser-flare photometry (LFM) values (HR 1.003, p = 0.01) were independent risk factors for ME manifestation. Patients with ME revealed significant changes in BCVA, LFM, and IOP and new optic disc swelling at 6 and 3 months before ME onset compared to timepoint of ME occurrence (p < 0.05, each).

Conclusion: ME is a common complication of JIA-U. Demographic risk factors and courses of IOP, BCVA, and LFM may indicate patients at risk for ME onset.

Keywords: juvenile idiopathic arthritis; macular edema; occurrence; risk factors; uveitis.