Airsoft gun-related ocular injuries: Long-term follow-up Academic Article uri icon


  • Purpose: To describe the long-term ocular effects of airsoft gun pellet injuries. Methods: The present study extends by 7-10 years the results of a 2010 study on the acute ocular findings related to airsoft gun pellet injuries in 59 patients, wherein we found a variety of anterior and posterior segment injuries, including hyphema (66%), corneal edema (61%), corneal erosions (59%), and traumatic mydriasis (25%), as well as retinal edema in (22%), retinal hemorrhages and mild vitreous hemorrhage in (2.1%), and, in 1 patient, elevated intraocular pressure and traumatic cataract. Results: Of the 59 patients in the original study, up-to-date medical records were available for 26 (44%; 20 males). The mean follow-up time was 8 years (range, 7.2-10.3 years); the mean age, 17.1 years. Persistent abnormal findings included traumatic cataract in 3 cases (11.5%) and iris dialysis in 1 case (3.8%). In all traumatic cataract cases, cataract was not present at the time of initial examination after injury. Final mean best-corrected visual acuity was logMAR 0.92 (range, 0.67-1.0). Conclusions: While most of the acute airsoft gun-related ocular injuries are transient, some patients may develop significant and potentially sight-threatening ocular damage, even in the absence of significant pathologic findings at the time of the injury. Long-term follow-up on these patients is advisable.

publication date

  • January 1, 2018