The diagnostic yield of vitrectomy specimen analysis in chronic idiopathic endogenous uveitis


PURPOSE. The low diagnostic yield of vitrectomy specimen analysis in chronic idiopathic uveitis (CIU) has been related to the complex nature of the underlying disease and to methodologic and tissue immanent factors in older studies. In an attempt to evaluate the impact of recently acquired analytic methods, the authors assessed the current diagnostic yield in CIU. METHODS. Retrospective analysis of consecutive vitrectomy specimens from patients with chronic endogenous uveitis (n = 56) in whom extensive systemic workup had not revealed a specific diagnosis (idiopathic) and medical treatment had not resulted in a satisfying clinical situation. Patients with acute postoperative endophthalmitis served a basis for methodologic comparison (Group 2; n = 21). RESULTS. In CIU, a specific diagnosis provided in 17.9% and a specific diagnosis excluded in 21.4%. In 60.7% the laboratory investigations were inconclusive. In postoperative endophthalmitis, microbiological culture established the infectious agent in 47.6%. In six of eight randomly selected cases, eubacterial PCR identified bacterial DNA confirming the culture results in three, remaining negative in two with a positive culture and being positive in three no growth specimens. A double negative result never occurred, suggesting a very high detection rate, when both tests were applied. CONCLUSIONS. The diagnostic yield of vitrectomy specimen analysis has not been improved by currently routinely applied methods in recent years in contrast to the significantly improved sensitivity of combined standardized culture and PCR analysis in endophthalmitis. Consequently, the low diagnostic yield in CIU has to be attributed to insufficient understanding of the underlying pathophysiologic mechanisms.

Eur J Ophthalmol 2006; 16(4): 588 - 594



J.G. Garweg, D. Wanner, G.-M. Sarra, M. Altwegg, H. Loosli, L. Kodjikian, M. Halberstadt

Article History

This article is available as full text PDF.

  • If you are a Subscriber, please log in now.

  • Article price: Eur 36,00
  • You will be granted access to the article for 72 hours and you will be able to download any format (PDF or ePUB). The article will be available in your login area under "My PayPerView". You will need to register a new account (unless you already own an account with this journal), and you will be guided through our online shop. Online purchases are paid by Credit Card through PayPal.
  • If you are not a Subscriber you may:
  • Subscribe to this journal
  • Unlimited access to all our archives, 24 hour a day, every day of the week.


Article usage statistics

The blue line displays unique views in the time frame indicated.
The yellow line displays unique downloads.
Views and downloads are counted only once per session.

No supplementary material is available for this article.