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01.12.2019 | Case report | Ausgabe 1/2019 Open Access

BMC Ophthalmology 1/2019

Ipsilateral transient amaurosis, mydriasis and light reflex absence after subconjunctival local anesthesia with mepivacaine in three patients with refractory glaucoma – a case report

BMC Ophthalmology > Ausgabe 1/2019
Katharina Knoll, Kristine Chobanyan-Jürgens, Dirk O. Stichtenoth, Ingo Roland Volkmann, Katerina Hufendiek, Carsten Framme
Wichtige Hinweise
Katharina Knoll and Kristine Chobanyan-Jürgens contributed equally to this work.

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The subconjunctival anesthesia with local anesthetics is considered as a low-risk procedure allowing ocular surgery without serious complications typical for retro- or parabulbar anesthesia, especially in patients with preexisting Optic Nerve damage. We report development of ipsilateral transient amaurosis accompanied with mydriasis and both, direct and consensual light response absence.

Case presentation

Three patients with advanced refractory glaucoma undergoing laser cyclophotocoagulation (CPC) for intraocular pressure lowering experienced these adverse effects just few minutes after subconjunctival injection of mepivacaine 2% solution (Scandicaine® 2%, without vasoconstrictor supplementation).
The vision was completely recovered to usual values in up to 20 h after mepivacaine application. Extensive ophthalmological examination, including cranial magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), revealed no further ocular abnormalities, especially no vascular constriction or thrombotic signs as well as no retinal detachment. The oculomotor function remained intact. The blockade of ipsilateral ciliary ganglion parasympathetic fibers by mepivacaine may be the responsible mechanism. Systemic pathways as drug-drug interactions seem to be unlikely involved. Importantly, all three patients tolerated the same procedure previously or at a later date without any complication. Overall, our thoroughly elaborated risk management could not determine the causative factor explaining the observed ocular complications just in the current occasion and not at other time points.


Doctors should be aware and patients should be informed about such rare complications after subconjunctival local anesthetics administration. Adequate risk management should insure patients’ safety.
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