Purpose To evaluate the effect of orbital radiation prior to surgery on the clinical course and extraocular muscle (EOM) radiologic volume changes after decompression in Graves orbitopathy (GO). Design Retrospective, interventional case series. Methods The medical records of patients treated with orbital decompression for GO and who underwent postoperative orbital computed tomography were reviewed. Only patients who underwent rehabilitative decompression in the inactive phase and who received systemic corticosteroids alone (ST group) or combined orbital radiation and systemic corticosteroids (SRT group) in the active inflammatory phase of the disease were selected. The main outcome measure was the comparison of preoperative and postoperative EOM volumes. Secondary outcome measures were changes in proptosis and diplopia after decompression. Results Thirty-seven of 114 patients were selected for this study. There were no differences between the ST group (n = 22, 42 eyes) and SRT group (n = 15, 30 eyes) in terms of demographics or predecompression characteristics. After decompression surgery, the total EOM volume significantly increased by 15% in the ST group, but radiated EOMs in the SRT group did not expand, resulting in decreased induction of postoperative diplopia. The percentages of patients showing increased diplopia after decompression differed significantly between the groups (ST group, 40.9% vs SRT group, 13.3%, P =.04). However, there was no difference in exophthalmos reduction after decompression between the 2 groups. Conclusions Orbital radiation prior to orbital decompression can reduce both the postoperative increase in EOM volume and deterioration in diplopia.
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