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Intravitreal Triamcinolone Acetonide Injection in a Rodent Model of Anterior Ischemic Optic Neuropathy

Pereira, Luciano S., MD, PhD; Ávila, Marcos P., MD, PhD; Salustiano, Luciana X., MD, PhD; Paula, Alcio C., MD, PhD; Arnhold, Emmanuel, PhD; McCulley, Timothy J., MD

Section Editor(s): Gordon, Lynn K. MD, PhD; Horton, Johnathan MD, PhD

doi: 10.1097/WNO.0000000000000639
Basic and Translational Research

Introduction: The management of nonarteritic anterior ischemic optic neuropathy centers around prevention of second eye involvement, without a uniformly accepted therapy for the involved eye. Several researchers have assessed the benefit of steroids with conflicting results. This experimental study was designed to evaluate the efficacy of a single intravitreal triamcinolone acetonide injection (IVTA) in preserving retinal ganglion cells (RGCs) in a rodent model of anterior ischemic optic neuropathy (rAION).

Methods: The rAION was induced in female Wistar rats. Animals were randomized into 3 groups: 1) untreated, 2) treated with 56 μg IVTA, and 3) intravitreal saline (placebo). Procedures were performed in the left eye, with the right eye serving as control. After 30 days, animals were sacrificed and eyes were assessed histologically for RGC number.

Results: The average number of RGC was significantly lower in rAION subgroups when compared with the control group (P < 0.001). No significant difference was seen between rAION eyes treated with IVTA, placebo, and untreated eyes (P > 0.05%).

Conclusions: In this rodent model for AION, no therapeutic benefit of intravitreal steroid injection was identified.

Departments of Ophthalmology (LSP, MPA, ACP), Pathology (LXS), and Statistics (EA), Universidade Federal de Goiás, Goiânia, Brazil; and The Wilmer Eye Institute (TJM), Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland.

Address correspondence to Luciano Sousa Pereira, MD, PhD, Department of Ophthalmology, Universidade Federal de Goiás, Avenue T3, 1521, Apto 1101, Setor Bueno, Goiânia, Goiás, 74210-245, Brazil; E-mail:

The authors report no conflicts of interest.

© 2018 by North American Neuro-Ophthalmology Society