We examined the aqueous humor by electron microscopy of four patients with atopic dermatitis and retinal detachment. All the patients had a moderate number of cells in the aqueous humor. Cataract impaired fundus visualization except for one patient with aphakia. A flat retinal detachment involved a wide area detected by echography. The intraocular pressure in the eyes with retinal detachment demonstrated a marked diurnal fluctuation compared with that of the fellow eye. The aqueous cells consisted predominantly of photoreceptor outer segments. This finding does not support the theory that aqueous cells in atopic dermatitis are of inflammatory origin. Photoreceptor outer segments in aqueous humor are indicative of rhegmatogenous retinal detachment in patients with atopic dermatitis.
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