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September 18, 2002

Diagnosing Temporal Arteritis

Author Affiliations

Stephen J.LurieMD, PhD, Senior EditorIndividualAuthor

JAMA. 2002;288(11):1352-1353. doi:10.1001/jama.288.11.1350

To the Editor: In his Grand Rounds presentation about temporal arteritis (TA), Dr Hellman1 described the examination for bruits over the carotid, subclavian, axillary, abdominal aortic, and femoral artery regions. However, he did not describe auscultation of the orbits for bruits in his patient who had presented with, among other symptoms, unilateral blindness. I have long advocated orbital auscultation in cases of suspected TA.2,3 Indeed, as noted by Hellmann, about a third of patients with TA become blind. Since retinal ischemia is common in TA, it is not surprising that orbital bruits are often heard.