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COVID-19: Ophthalmological Aspects of the SARS-CoV 2 Global PandemicArticle in several languages: English | deutsch
received 18 April 2020
accepted 23 April 2020
06 May 2020 (online)
Purpose To perform a systematic analysis of articles on the ophthalmological implications of the global COVID-19 pandemic.
Methods PubMed.gov was searched for relevant articles using the keywords “COVID-19”, “coronavirus”, and “SARS-CoV-2” in conjunction with “ophthalmology” and “eye”. Moreover, official recommendations of ophthalmological societies were systematically reviewed, with a focus on the American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO) and the Royal College of Ophthalmologists (RCOphth).
Results As of April 16, 2020, in total, 21 peer-reviewed articles on the ophthalmological aspects of COVID-19 were identified. Of these, 12 (57.1%) were from Asia, 6 (28.6%) from the United States of America, and 3 (14.3%) from Europe. There were 5 (23.8%) original studies, 10 (47.6%) letters, 3 (14.2%) case reports, and 3 (14.2%) reviews. These articles could be classified into the topics “Modes and prevention of (ocular) transmission”, “Ophthalmological manifestations of COVID-19”, “Clinical guidance concerning ophthalmological practice during the COVID-19 pandemic”, and “Practical recommendations for clinical infrastructure”. Practical recommendations could be extracted from official statements of the AAO and the RCOphth.
Conclusion Within a short period, a growing body of articles has started to elucidate the ophthalmological implications of COVID-19. As the eye can represent a route of infection (actively via tears and passively via the nasoacrimal duct), ophthalmological care has to undergo substantial modifications during this pandemic. In the eye, COVID-19 can manifest as keratoconjunctivitis.
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