Thermal imaging useful in eyes with subtle clinical signs of TED

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Surface inflammation in patients with thyroid eye disease (TED) can be detected with thermal imaging, according to a study.

In this prospective consecutive, comparative case series, temperatures of pre-determined points on the ocular surface in degrees on 11 eyes with active TED, 46 eyes with inactive TED, and 40 healthy eyes were compared. Compared to eyes with inactive TED and healthy eyes, eyes with active TED had significantly higher temperatures at the caruncle, medial, and lateral conjunctiva. The caruncle had an AUROC (area under the receiver operating characteristic curves) value of 0.91, a sensitivity of 91%, and a specificity of 79%. Correlation coefficient for the caruncular temperature with the corresponding clinical activity score was 0.65.

The authors concluded that thermal imaging could supplement clinical activity score in clinically evident cases. In addition, it has the potential to help stage eyes with subtle clinical signs.

Dave TV, Patodi P, Richhariya MA, et al. Thermal imaging of the ocular surface in thyroid eye disease: A comparison between active, inactive and healthy eyes. Curr Eye Res. 2021;DOI: 10.1080/02713683.2021.1907418. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 33745401.

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