Clinical findings in Brown-McLean syndrome

T. W. Gothard, D. R. Hardten, S. S. Lane, D. J. Doughman, J. H. Krachmer, E. J. Holland

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


The Brown-McLean syndrome is a clinical condition with corneal edema involving the peripheral 2 to 3 mm of the cornea. The edema typically starts inferiorly and progresses circumferentially, but spares the central portion of the cornea. Additionally, the edema is associated with a punctate orange- brown pigmentation on the endothelium underlying the edematous areas. Central cornea guttata is frequently seen. This condition occurs most frequently after intracapsular cataract extraction, but may also occur after extracapsular cataract extraction and phacoemulsification, or pars plana lensectomy and vitrectomy. Surgical complications and multiple intraocular procedures are frequently observed in these patients. Less frequently, the Brown-McLean syndrome can occur in eyes that have not had surgery. We studied the clinical characteristics of 43 affected eyes of 32 patients. New findings included Brown-McLean syndrome occurring in two eyes of a phakic patient with intermittent angle-closure glaucoma. Two eyes developed Brown-McLean syndrome after phacoemulsification and one eye developed peripheral edema after pars plana vitrectomy and lensectomy. Additionally, severe, infectious keratitis occurred after rupture of peripheral bullae in two eyes. Patients with this condition should be examined periodically and educated regarding the early clinical signs of corneal ulceration.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)729-737
Number of pages9
JournalAmerican journal of ophthalmology
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1993

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