16.04.2020 | Sleep Breathing Physiology and Disorders • Original Article
Angioid streaks and obstructive sleep apnea syndrome: are they related?
Marta Castany-Aregall, Gloria Aparicio, Núria Grau, Amadeu Carceller, Santiago Pérez-Hoyos, Jaume Català-Mora, Alfonso Anton
Sleep and Breathing
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Sleep apnea syndrome (OSAS) has been associated with different ocular manifestations including glaucoma, floppy eye syndrome, punctate keratitis, keratoconus, and optic neuropathy. Angioid streaks are mainly associated with pseudoxanthoma elasticum (PXE) although they can appear in other systemic conditions affecting the elastic fibers.
This is a prospective, cross-sectional study. A complete ophthalmic examination was performed in 92 patients undergoing overnight polysomnography for suspicion of OSAS. Diagnosis and classification of OSAS were made based on apnea-hypopnea index (AHI). Stereoscopic optic disc photographs were taken in all patients and independently evaluated by two ophthalmologists. Patients with angioid streaks were referred to a dermatologist for axillary skin biopsy in order to rule out pseudoxanthoma elasticum or other skin abnormalities.
Bilateral angioid streaks were observed in three patients who had been diagnosed with severe OSAS (AHI > 30/h). No clinical features characteristic of pseudoxanthoma elasticum or other pathological skin signs were observed. Skin biopsies were normal for all three patients, supporting the diagnosis of idiopathic angioid streaks. One of the patients developed bilateral choroidal neovascularization secondary to the angioid streaks over subsequent years.
In view of the low prevalence of idiopathic angioid streaks in the general population, the finding of angioid streaks in patients with severe OSAS suggests OSAS as a possible risk factor for its development. The hypothesis of a connective tissue abnormality that could explain an association between both entities deserves further elucidation.