Fourteen patients, 12 of whom were women, with an age range from 26 to 56 years, presented with progressive or recurrent optic neuropathy, despite conventional doses of corticosteroid, and laboratory evidence of collagen vascular disease. The visual loss was severe and most had an acuity less than 20/200. Megadose corticosteroid therapy improved the vision in 11 of the 12 patients. Continued oral prednisone and cytotoxic drugs were necessary to maintain vision in nine patients. Patients with autoimmune optic neuropathy must be differentiated from cases with idiopathic optic neuritis or multiple sclerosis to facilitate the appropriate therapy.
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