Branch retinal artery occlusion secondary to high-altitude exposure and diabetic retinopathy: a case report.BMC Ophthalmol. 2020 Jul 11; 20(1):281.BO
To report a case of branch retinal artery occlusion (BRAO) secondary to high-altitude exposure and diabetic retinopathy (DR), and to characterize the retinal changes before and after hyperbaric oxygen (HBO) treatment.
We present a case of a 42-year-old man with DR who travelled to Tibet (in China, 3800 m/12467 ft. above mean sea level). The day after the end of his journey, the patient presented with acute, painless visual loss and visual field loss in his left eye. He was then diagnosed with BRAO, which is an acute blockage of blood flow. After HBO treatment, visual acuity and visual field were improved.
High-altitude exposure and DR may be considered as relevant risk factors for BRAO. The ophthalmologist should be aware that the BRAO might be a rare presenting sign of high-altitude retinopathy (HAR), particularly in patients with DR. HBO treatment can be considered as a choice for ophthalmologists on treatment against BRAO.