During the first 5 years (1963-67) of a new Medical Ophthalmology Unit, 204 of the 1700 admissions had endogenous uveitis. It was anterior in 141 (70%), posterior in thirty-three (16%) and generalized in thirty (14%).
Acute uveitis in ninety-seven patients ended in the course of months whereas chronic uveitis in 107 was measured over the years, punctuated by relapses.
Sex distribution was equal, and the age at apparent onset of the first incident was evenly spaced in the third to sixth decades, with a mean age of 39 years (range 6-77). Uveitis, observed in twenty children of either sex, was more commonly posterior and chronic.
Clinical accompaniments of adult uveitis include rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, respiratory infections, toxoplasmosis, sarcoidosis and helminth infestations in that order of frequency. No accompanying abnormality could be detected by clinical examination, radiology, haematology or other investigations in ninety-two (45%) patients.
It seems that widely cast investigative routines are not worthwhile in view of this poor return, and that instead, a few tests, selected by the clinico-radiological circumstances, might be equally fruitful. For instance, the Kveim-Siltzbach test is helpful in delineating sarcoid uveitis and the toxoplasma dye test in defining one form of posterior uveitis. In this series, the toxoplasma dye test titre was positive significantly more often in posterior than in anterior uveitis, and this was more evident in Negroes rather than Caucasians. Three-quarters of Negroes with choroiditis had toxoplasma dye test titres of 1: 16 and above.
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