The Retina Reference

Ischemic Ocular Syndrome

Ischemic ocular syndrome is a constellation of fundus signs arising from insufficient arterial blood supply to the eye. Usually the problem stems from atherosclerotic stenosis of the carotid artery. In this fundus photograph, the veins are dilated and the blood column is darker than normal reflecting increased deoxygenation of the blood. There are many dark dot hemorrhages in the outer retina in the periphery. These findings usually spur a diagnostic workup centering on examination of the carotid arteries by doppler ultrasound imaging or magnetic resonance angiography. Sometimes the inadequacy of blood supply is such that iris neovascularization develops and even neovascular glaucoma. In such cases, injections of anti vascular endothelial growth factor drugs and panretinal laser photocoagulation may be needed.