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The British Ophthalmological Surveillance Unit

The British Ophthalmological Surveillance Unit (BOSU) is run by The Royal College of Ophthalmologists to help improve the understanding of rare eye diseases.

What does the BOSU do?

It allows doctors and researchers to find out how many patients in the UK are affected by a particular disease or condition each year – this is called epidemiological surveillance. Doctors can also gather information about all the cases of a rare condition so they can begin to understand what might have caused it and how to diagnose and treat it.

How does the BOSU work?

Each month the BOSU contacts consultant ophthalmologists, and asks them to report cases of the rare conditions currently being studied. If a doctor has seen a child affected by one of these conditions they tick a box on the card and return it to BOSU.  On receiving the card, the BOSU informs the investigation team, who send the reporting doctor a short questionnaire to collect some further details.

The studies do not collect any personal information such as name or address. The researchers will not need to contact the patient, their family or their GP. They will only collect details about the condition that are contained in your hospital notes.

How do I opt-out from being included in these research studies?

You can opt-out from having information about your condition included by informing your doctor that you do not wish to participate. Then they will know not to report your case to the BOSU.

What rare conditions are being studied?

Start Date End Date Public Information Sheet
Ocular Complications of ENSS 01/01/2016 01/01/2018 n/a
Surveillance of Emergency Canthotomy/ Cantholysis


01/03/2016 01/05/2017 n/a
Presumed Ocular Tuberculosis 01/09/2016 01/09/2017 n/a
Ocular Behçet’s Disease 01/10/2016 01/10/2017 n/a
Birdshot Retinopathy 01/05/2017 01/06/2018 n/a
Severe central visual loss following cataract surgery 01/05/2017 01/06/2018 n/a