The purpose of this review is to familiarize the reader with the landscape of current neuro-ophthalmology research in the field of multiple sclerosis and to highlight important findings, directions of future research and advances in the clinical management of visual and ocular motor manifestations of multiple sclerosis.
Research pertaining to the visual system in multiple sclerosis has identified new biomarkers of disease and is contributing to a better understanding of disease mechanisms. Progress has been made in the symptomatic management of visual manifestations of multiple sclerosis and visual outcome measures are now being included in clinical trials, with important quality of life ramifications. Perhaps the most prominent contribution from neuro-ophthalmology research in multiple sclerosis has been the establishment of the visual system as a model to study disease pathogenesis, and for the systematic, objective, and longitudinal detection and monitoring of protective and restorative neurotherapeutic strategies. The emergence of these sophisticated capabilities has been in large part due to the application of high speed, high definition, and objective methods for the elucidation of both the structure and function of visual system networks.
Advances in neuro-ophthalmology research in multiple sclerosis have led to the establishment of the visual system as a model to objectively study disease pathogenesis, and for the identification of novel neurotherapeutic capabilities. With the prospects of myelin repair and neuroprotective agents increasingly becoming recognized as achievable goals, the validation and utility of new visual outcome measures quantifying changes in axonal integrity, myelin protection, and repair will likely prove invaluable.
aDepartment of Neurology
bDepartment of Ophthalmology, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas, Dallas, Texas, USA
Correspondence to Dr Elliot M. Frohman, MD, 5323 Harry Hines Blvd, Dallas, TX 75390-8806, USA. Tel: +1 214 645 0555; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org