OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the disease manifestations and clinical course of patients affected by Cogan syndrome (a syndrome of nonsyphilitic interstitial keratitis and vestibuloauditory symptoms) at a single institution during roughly a half century. PATIENTS AND METHODS: Medical records of all patients diagnosed as having Cogan syndrome at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn, and who were followed up from 1940 to 2002 were comprehensively reviewed. Otolaryngologic, ophthalmologic, and systemic manifestations of disease were analyzed. Analysis included patient demographics, presenting manifestations, delayed manifestations, laboratory testing, physical examination features, therapeutic interventions, disease course, and hearing and vision outcomes. RESULTS: Sixty patients were identified as having Cogan syndrome, with follow-up from 1940 to 2002. Most patients presented initially with vestibuloauditory symptoms, most commonly sudden hearing loss (50%). The most common inflammatory ophthalmologic condition noted was bilateral interstitial keratitis. Headache (40%), fever (27%), and arthralgia (35%) were the most frequently encountered systemic manifestations. Evidence of aortitis was found in 12% of patients. Complete hearing loss was eventually noted in 52% of affected patients, whereas permanent loss of any degree of vision was uncommon. Cochlear implantation outcomes were uniformly good. Death directly or indirectly attributed to the effects of Cogan syndrome was noted in 4 patients. CONCLUSIONS: The major disease-related morbidities were due to vestibuloauditory disease and only infrequently due to systemic manifestations such as vasculitis, with or without aortitis. Cochlear implantation has been of major benefit in modern hearing rehabilitation for this patient population. We advise caution before institution of protracted courses of high-dose corticosteroids and/ or chemotherapy for patients without pronounced systemic disease or severe eye disease unmanageable by topical or periocular corticosteroids alone.
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