How is cytomegalovirus (CMV) retinitis in HIV infection diagnosed?

Updated: Jun 12, 2019
  • Author: Robert A Copeland, Jr, MD; Chief Editor: Andrew A Dahl, MD, FACS  more...
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Answer

Answer

A history and complete ophthalmologic examination with dilated funduscopic examination should be performed for diagnosis of CMV retinitis. Conjunctival swabs in combination with PCR can be used to confirm the diagnosis. PCR-based analysis of vitreous humor offers high diagnostic specificity and sensitivity. Vitreous sampling is usually reserved for patients with atypical lesions, for individuals in whom disease is not responsive to treatment, or for patients for whom a vitreous biopsy would carry little added risk.

In addition, the patient should have a workup for systemic CMV infection that includes testing of urine and serum CMV titers.


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