The use of multimodal imaging in the evaluation of a patient with central retinal artery occlusion in the setting of asteroid hyalosis: a case report

Timothy M. Janetos, Olga German, Rukhsana Mirza*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: A central retinal artery occlusion (CRAO) is an ophthalmic emergency due to its strong association with cerebrovascular and cardiovascular morbidity and mortality. A timely diagnosis is necessary but difficult in the setting of dense asteroid hyalosis, as typical fundoscopic findings can be obscured. We present a case where multimodal imaging in an eye with an obscured fundus could lead to timely diagnosis and management of CRAO in a patient with acute vision loss. Case presentation: A 94-year-old Caucasian woman with a history of exudative macular degeneration presented to the retina clinic with acute vision loss in one eye over the course of an afternoon. The patient had dense asteroid hyalosis, and a direct retinal exam was not possible. Multimodal imaging suggested a CRAO diagnosis. The patient received digital ocular massage directly prior to undergoing fluorescein angiography (FANG), which confirmed the diagnosis. The patient was transported from clinic to the emergency room for an emergency stroke workup, which revealed a spontaneous echo in the left atrial appendage, and the patient was started on antiplatelet therapy. When she presented for follow-up within a week, the patient noted that her vision had improved at the time of digital ocular massage and continued to improve thereafter. Her FANG showed marked reperfusion of the retina, and she subsequently has completely regained her baseline visual acuity. Conclusions: Multimodal imaging is useful in evaluating visual loss in patients with acute vision loss. In addition, ocular massage is a simple, low-risk intervention that may have benefit in the treatment of acute CRAO. Patients who present to ophthalmologists with an acute CRAO need an emergency referral for evaluation of cerebrovascular and cardiovascular comorbidities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number145
JournalJournal of Medical Case Reports
Volume15
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2021

Keywords

  • Asteroid hyalosis
  • CRAO
  • Case report
  • Ocular massage

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

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