The time has passed when the epithelioid tubercle was the only reliable witness to tuberculous infection, though this still remains the principal histologic proof of tuberculosis. The bacillus of tuberculosis, like every other parasite, causes inflammation under certain conditions. Its favorite localization is the vascular apparatus and the connective tissue ; hence its special predilection for the uvea. The intensity and course of the tuberculous inflammation depend on the number and virulence of the bacilli and on the reaction of the organ attacked.
The following are examples of the different types of histologic reactions to the invasion of the tubercle bacillus: If tubercle bacilli are injected into the blood vessels of rabbits (Stock1), choroiditis and iridocyclitis result ; the lesions consist at first only of lymphocytes ; gradually epithelioid cells develop, and occasionally giant cells.
A totally different reaction is caused if tuberculous rabbits are superinfected by the introduction of tubercle
IGERSHEIMER J. PATHOLOGY OF TUBERCULOSIS OF THE ANTERIOR UVEA. Arch Ophthalmol. 1934;11(1):119–132. doi:10.1001/archopht.1934.00830080127014
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