UBC Graduate Research

Ocular Manifestations of COVID-19 : A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis Nasiri, Naser; Sharifi, Hamid; Bazrafshan, Azam; Noori, Atefeh; Karamouzian, Mohammad; Sharifi, Ali


Several studies have reported the characteristics of Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), yet there is a gap in our understanding of the ocular manifestations of COVID-19. In this systematic review and meta-analysis, we investigated the prevalence of ocular manifestations in COVID-19 patients. We searched Pubmed, Embase, Scopus, Web of Science, and medRxiv from December 1, 2019 to August 11, 2020. Two independent reviewers screened the articles, abstracted the data, and assessed the quality of included studies in duplicate. Thirty-eight studies were eligible after screening of 895 unique articles, with a total of 8,219 COVID-19 patients (55.3% female; n = 3,486 out of 6,308 patients). Using data extracted from cross-sectional studies, we performed randomeffects meta-analyses to estimate the pooled prevalence of ocular symptoms along with 95% confidence interval (CI). The prevalence of ocular manifestations was estimated to be 11.03% (95% CI: 5.71–17.72). In the studies that reported the details of observed ocular symptoms, the most common ocular manifestations were dry eye or foreign body sensation (n = 138, 16%), redness (n = 114, 13.3%), tearing (n = 111, 12.8%), itching (n = 109, 12.6%), eye pain (n = 83, 9.6%) and discharge (n = 76, 8.8%). Moreover, conjunctivitis had the highest rate among reported ocular diseases in COVID-19 patients (79 out of 89, 88.8%). The results suggest that approximately one out of ten COVID-19 patients show at least one ocular symptom. Attention to ocular manifestations, especially conjunctivitis, can increase the sensitivity of COVID-19 detection among patients.

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Attribution 4.0 International