Efficacy of curcumin in the management of chronic anterior uveitis.
Phytother Res. 1999 Jun;13(4):318-22. PMID: 10404539
Department of Ophthalmology, K.G. Medical College, Lucknow, India.
Curcumin, obtained from rhizomes of Curcuma longa, was administered orally to patients suffering from chronic anterior uveitis (CAU) at a dose of 375 mg three times a day for 12 weeks. Of 53 patients enrolled, 32 completed the 12-week study. They were divided into two groups: one group of 18 patients received curcumin alone, whereas the other group of 14 patients, who had a strong PPD reaction, in addition received antitubercular treatment. The patients in both the groups started improving after 2 weeks of treatment. All the patients who received curcumin alone improved, whereas the group receiving antitubercular therapy along with curcumin had a response rate of 86%. Follow up of all the patients for the next 3 years indicated a recurrence rate of 55% in the first group and of 36% in the second group. Four of 18 (22%) patients in the first group and 3 of 14 patients (21%) in the second group lost their vision in the follow up period due to various complications in the eyes, e.g. vitritis, macular oedema, central venous block, cataract formation, glaucomatous optic nerve damage etc. None of the patients reported any side effect of the drug. The efficacy of curcumin and recurrences following treatment are comparable to corticosteroid therapy which is presently the only available standard treatment for this disease. The lack of side effects with curcumin is its greatest advantage compared with corticosteroids. A double blind multi-centric clinical trial with this drug in CAU is highly desirable to further validate the results of the present study.