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An Approach To:

Vol. 1 No. 1 (1995)

Retinopathy of Prematurity: A Clinical Approach

October 31, 2020


Retinopathy of prematurity (ROP), previously known as retrolental fibroplasia, was first described by Terry in 1942 (1). It is a vasoproliferative disorder that is a leading cause of childhood blindness in the United States, causing 550 new cases of infant blindness each year (2). It occurs principally in premature infants treated with high concentrations of oxygen. There are two phases of ROP: (i) an acute phase in which normal vasculogenesis is interrupted, and (ii) a chronic phase in which vascular membranes proliferate into the
vitreous. This proliferation can lead to retinal detachment, scarring of the macula, and significant visual loss (3).
This article summarizes the incidence, pathophysiology, and classification of ROP. Current protocols for evaluating and treating ROP, as well as long-term sequelae, are also described.


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