High-dose intravenous steroid pulse therapy in ocular involvement of Behcet’s disease: a pilot double-blind control study

خلاصه: Aim: To evaluate the efficacy of intravenous high-dose pulses of methylprednisolone (IVPM) for treatment of ocular involvement in Behcet’s disease (BD). Method: In a double-blind control study, we randomized BD patients with posterior uveitis (PU) and/or retinal vasculitis (RV) into two groups. They received either IVPM (1000 mg methylprednisolone) or placebo for 3 consecutive days. Both groups received combination therapy with IV cyclophosphamide, azathioprine and prednisolone for 6 months. Visual acuity (VA), Disease Activity Index (DAI) based on the inflammatory state of each section of each eye, total inflammatory (TIAI) and adjusted DAI (TADAI) for each patient were calculated. The comparisons were done by paired t- and Mann–Whitney U-test. Results: Seventeen patients in each group completed the treatment. The mean VA improved from 0.5 to 0.8 (P < 0.000001) for the study and from 0.6 to 0.7 (P < 0.02) for the placebo group. The difference was significant (P = 0.01). The comparison showed no significant difference regarding DAI improvement in other items (P > 0.2): PU, 1.9 to 0.5 (P < 0.0006) versus 2.3 to 0.8 (P < 0.0002); RV: 4.0 to 1.1 (P < 0.0004) versus 3.1 to 1.1 (P < 0.0005); TIAI: 23 to 5.7 (P < 0.0002) versus 24.8 to 8.4 (P < 0.003); TADAI: 24.1 to 7.3 (P < 0.0002) versus 25.9 to 7.9 (P < 0.004). We had one flare in the study versus seven in the placebo group (P < 0.005). Conclusion: Adding high-dose intravenous steroid pulse therapy to conventional combination therapy for severe ocular lesions of BD may cause better improvement on VA and fewer flares during the first 6 months of treatment.