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Canthaxanthine is a naturally occurring carotenoid that has been a popular over-the-counter oral artificial tanning agent in Europe, Canada, and Australia since 1979. It is also used at low dosage as a food-colouring agent and as a therapeutic agent for photosensitivity disorders such as erythropoietic protoporphyria. Canthaxanthin retinopathy was first described in 1982 by Cortin et al. In Germany the office of the federal board of health refused the permit for oral tanning agents containing canthaxanthine in 1985. At that time the long-term course of the disease was not known. 25 years later the investigators did these long-term follow-up examinations.
Observational Model: Case-Only, Time Perspective: Prospective
University Eye Hospital, University of Cologne
University of Cologne
Published on BioPortfolio: 2014-08-27T03:13:32-0400
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A trans-carotenoid pigment widely distributed in nature. The compound is used as an oral suntanning agent and as a food and drug coloring agent. Oral ingestion of the compound causes canthaxanthin retinopathy.
A bilateral retinopathy occurring in premature infants treated with excessively high concentrations of oxygen, characterized by vascular dilatation, proliferation, and tortuosity, edema, and retinal detachment, with ultimate conversion of the retina into a fibrous mass that can be seen as a dense retrolental membrane. Usually growth of the eye is arrested and may result in microophthalmia, and blindness may occur. (Dorland, 27th ed)
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