Orbit and optic nerve
Optic atrophy

Topic Completed: 1 February 2014

Revised: 4 April 2019

Copyright: 2004-2019, PathologyOutlines.com, Inc.

PubMed Search: Optic atrophy [title] pathology

Nat Pernick, M.D.
Page views in 2018: 76
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Cite this page: Pernick N. Orbit and optic nerve: optic atrophy. PathologyOutlines.com website. http://www.pathologyoutlines.com/topic/eyeorbitopticatrophy.html. Accessed October 17th, 2019.
Definition / general
  • Loss of function of optic nerve with gliosis, loss of capillaries and loss of axonal tissue
  • Due to damage from within the eye (optic neuritis, papilledema, glaucoma, retina-choroid lesions), to optic nerve or brain (trauma, tumor, demyelinating disorders, hydrocephalus) or congenital (Leber optic atrophy)
Gross description
  • White, pale disc
Microscopic (histologic) description
  • Loss of substance of optic nerve due to degeneration of myelin sheaths and axons
  • Dura appears redundant due to loss of substance
  • Gliosis within nerve
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