Aims: To estimate the incidence of childhood uveitis not associated with juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA) in the United Kingdom.
Methods: Children under 16 years who presented with a new diagnosis of uveitis from November 2014 to October 2015 were identified prospectively through the British and Scottish Ophthalmological Surveillance Unit reporting card system. Incident questionnaires were sent to reporting ophthalmologists at presentation and 12 months.
Results: From 1st November 2014 to 31st October 2015, 119 cases were reported. Thirty-nine cases were excluded. The estimated minimum annual incidence of non-JIA uveitis in children younger than 16 years is 0.66 per 100,000 (95% CI 0.52-0.82). Median age at presentation was 10 years. 73% had bilateral uveitis. Median (IQR) BCVA in the worse eye was 0.3 (IQR 0.1-0.66) logMAR. The location of uveitis was: anterior 36%, intermediate 24%, posterior 6.8% and panuveitis 30%. 70% of cases were idiopathic. Most children were started on topical corticosteroids at presentation (86%, n = 51). At presentation, 31% (n = 19) were on started on systemic corticosteroids. At 1 year only 13% (n = 7) remained on corticosteroids, with the majority transitioned to steroid-sparing agents: methotrexate (30.8%, n = 16), mycophenolate (5.8%) and anti-TNF agents 5 (9.6%). At 1 year, 46% had ongoing intraocular inflammation despite treatment. The most common ocular adverse event was raised intraocular pressure (13.5%, n = 7).
Conclusion: Our study provides the first national population-based data of non-JIA childhood uveitis. Most children remain on treatment at 1 year, but visual acuity improves and none were eligible for sight-impairment registration.