Central retinal artery occlusion (CRAO) is an ophthalmic emergency and the ocular analogue of cerebral stroke. Best evidence reflects that over three-quarters of patients suffer profound acute visual loss with a visual acuity of 20/400 or worse. This results in a reduced functional capacity and quality of life. There is also an increased risk of subsequent cerebral stroke and ischaemic heart disease. There are no current guideline-endorsed therapies, although the use of tissue plasminogen activator (tPA) has been investigated in two randomized controlled trials. This review will describe the pathophysiology, epidemiology, and clinical features of CRAO, and discuss current and future treatments, including the use of tPA in further clinical trials.
- central retinal artery occlusion