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Middle East African Journal of Ophthalmology Middle East African Journal of Ophthalmology
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Year : 2010  |  Volume : 17  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 148-155

Plus disease: Why is it important in retinopathy of prematurity?

1 Division of Pediatric Ophthalmology, King Khaled Eye Specialist Hospital, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
2 Department of Optometry and Visual Science, UCL Institute of Ophthalmology, Northampton Square, London EC1U0HB, United Kingdom
3 Calgary Retinal Consultants, Calgary, AB, Canada

Correspondence Address:
Carlos E Solarte
P.O. Box 7191, Riyadh 11462
Saudi Arabia
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0974-9233.63080

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Retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) is one of the leading causes of preventable blindness in childhood. Early posterior pole vascular signs of severe ROP have been studied since the first description of the disease. The progressive changes that take place in the posterior pole vessels of an extremely premature baby occur in a predictable fashion soon after birth. These vascular changes are described as plus disease and are defined as abnormal dilation and tortousity of the blood vessels during ROP that may go on to total retinal detachment. The ophthalmological community now has a better understanding of the pathology and cascade of events taking place in the posterior pole of an eye with active ROP. Despite many years of scientific work on plus disease, there continue to be many challenges in defining the severity and quantification of the vascular changes. It is believed that understanding of the vascular phenomenons in patients with ROP will help in designing new treatment strategies that will help in salvaging many of the eyes with severe ROP.

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