Purpose: To study the interrelations among pseudoexfoliation syndrome (PXS), abnormal iris transluminance, and ophthalmic artery blood flow in a controlled study.
Methods: Ultrasonographic examination using color Doppler imaging (CDI) was performed on the ophthalmic arteries of 46 unselected patients (92 eyes) who have had at least one transient ischemic attack (TIA) and on 32 healthy subjects (64 eyes). The authors recorded the peak systolic and end diastolic velocities and determined the resistivity indices. Iris transillumination photographs were evaluated by two ophthalmologists in a blind trial to show the presence of abnormal iris transluminance of these eyes. Biomicroscopic examination was performed to show the presence of PXS.
Results: The frequency of abnormal iris transluminance in the whole group of patients who had had a TIA and in control subjects was 63% and 28%, respectively (P < 0.05). Pseudoexfoliation syndrome was found in 41% of the right eyes and in 43% of the left eyes in the group of patients who had had a TIA. The difference between the resistivity indices for the ophthalmic arteries of patients who had had a TIA with positive iris transluminance and healthy subjects without transluminance was statistically significant (P < 0.05, Student's t test). Pseudoexfoliation syndrome was detectable in 55.6% of the right eyes and in 61.5% of the left eyes of patients who had had a TIA with abnormal iris transluminance.
Conclusion: The exceptionally high frequency of PXS in the eyes of patients who had had a TIA with positive iris transluminance suggests pathologic changes in the blood supply of PXS eyes. High values of resistivity indices for the ophthalmic arteries of these eyes suggest that disturbances in the ciliary circulation may be the possible cause of these changes.