Open-globe wounds in operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom: risk factors for poor visual outcomes and enucleation

Justin P. Harris, Grant A. Justin*, Daniel I. Brooks, Fasika A. Woreta, Rupesh V. Agrawal, Denise S. Ryan, Eric D. Weichel, Marcus H. Colyer

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Purpose: To determine the rates and types of open-globe wounds in soldiers admitted to Walter Reed Army Medical Center from 2001 to 2011 after sustaining combat injuries. Methods: Data were collected in the Walter Reed Ocular Trauma Database. Inclusion criteria were patients who suffered open-globe injuries. Open-globe injuries were classified by type of wound: corneal, corneo-scleral or scleral, or type of open-globe injury: perforating, rupture, penetrating or intraocular foreign body. The primary analysis assessed the effect on final visual acuity (VA) and the risk of enucleation. Results: In this study, 285 (32.02%) open-globe injuries were recorded in 890 eyes in the data set. Corneal wounds were noted in 127 (44.56%) eyes, corneo-scleral wounds in 78 (27.37%) and scleral wounds in 129 (45.26%) eyes. The involvement of both the corneal and sclera was associated with poorer visual outcome (BCVA < 20/200) compared to injuries with an injury confined to either the cornea or scleral alone (p = 0.038). At a wound length of greater than approximately 14 mm, patients had 75% chance of having a poor final VA. Enucleation was performed in 64 (22.46%) eyes of patients with wounds. The type of wound was not found to be predictive of enucleation in multivariate analysis, but rather the type of open-globe injury was predictive. Perforating (OR: 1.58, 95% CI: 1.43–1.72) and globe rupture injuries (OR: 1.49, 95% CI: 1.33–1.66) were more likely to undergo enucleation. Conclusions: Open-globe injuries occur frequently in combat ocular trauma. Poor final VA was noted most with corneo-scleral wounds with approximately 50% of patients having a final VA less than 20/200.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)904-908
Number of pages5
JournalActa Ophthalmologica
Issue number8
StatePublished - Dec 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • combat trauma
  • enucleation
  • eye injury
  • ocular trauma
  • open-globe injury


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