Clinical Implications of Direct Immunofluorescence Findings in Patients With Ocular Mucous Membrane Pemphigoid.
PURPOSE: To examine the clinical implications of positive or negative direct immunofluorescence biopsies (DIF) in patients with clinically typical ocular mucous membrane pemphigoid (MMP). DESIGN: Retrospective cohort study. METHODS: The study population was patients with clinically typical ocular MMP disease with documented DIF results who were followed for at least 1 year at the Duke University multidisciplinary ocular MMP clinic. Data were collected by chart review and included patient demographics, clinical examination findings, and history of autoimmune disease and/or malignancy, as well as topical, systemic, and surgical treatments received. Main outcome measures included MMP Disease Area Index, Foster stages, proportion legally blind, duration of follow-up, and use of systemic immunosuppression and ocular procedures in treatment. RESULTS: In multivariable analysis restricted to 55 patients, patients with negative and positive biopsies were similar in the outcome measures; however, positive-biopsy patients were more likely to be treated with systemic immunosuppression and were followed for longer at our clinic. Patients with isolated ocular disease were also more likely to have negative biopsies compared to those who also had extraocular disease. Patients who had conjunctival biopsies were more likely to have a negative direct immunofluorescence result than patients with biopsies from other sites. CONCLUSIONS: We encourage clinicians and patients to consider treatment with systemic immunosuppression even in the absence of diagnosis confirmation by DIF. Furthermore, this study supports current standard of care to pursue a nonocular biopsy of normal-appearing, perilesional skin or oral mucosa when possible.
Labowsky, MT; Stinnett, SS; Liss, J; Daluvoy, M; Hall, RP; Shieh, C
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