A Review of Neuro-ophthalmologic Emergencies

Bassey Fiebai


Background: Neuro-ophthalmic emergencies are relatively uncommon, however their outcome cause severe morbidity and even mortality. The ocular manifestations of these disorders are pointers to a more dangerous central nervous system or systemic pathology. The review aims to highlight the major ocular disorders that constitute neuro-ophthalmologic emergencies with a view to increasing the index of suspicion of these visual/life threatening disorders among primary care physicians, neurologists and ophthalmologists.

Method: The available literature on neuro-ophthalmologic emergencies was reviewed, using available journals and internet based search engines and resources. Keywords employed were Neuro-ophthalmology Emergency and Ocular Morbidity.

Results: The incidence of this group of emergencies is lower than that of other ophthalmic emergencies such as ruptured globe and retinal detachment; however they are associated with higher morbidity and even mortality. These emergencies can be grouped into four major categories for ease of diagnosis. Nigerian literature on neuro- ophthalmologic emergencies was unavailable.

Conclusion: The key to prevention of morbidity and mortality from neuro-ophthalmologic disorders is to have a good knowledge of the manifestations of these disorders and a high index of suspicion.


Neuro-ophthalmology; Emergency; Ocular Morbidity

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ISSN: 1597-4292