Characteristic appearances of fundus autofluorescence in treatment-naive and active polypoidal choroidal vasculopathy: a retrospective study of 170 patients

  • Xinyu Zhao
  • Song Xia
  • Youxin Chen
Retinal Disorders



To investigate the characteristic appearances of fundus autofluorescence (FAF) in patients with treatment-naive and active polypoidal choroidal vasculopathy (PCV).


Cases with the diagnosis of treatment-naive and active PCV from November 2012 to May 2017 at Peking Union Medical College Hospital were retrospectively reviewed. All patients underwent comprehensive ophthalmologic examination. Autofluorescence (AF) findings were described at the retinal sites of the corresponding lesions identified and diagnosed using indocyanine green angiography and spectral-domain optical coherence tomography.


One hundred seventy patients with 192 affected eyes were included. The logMAR BCVA of the patients were 0.53 ± 0.28. The six AF patterns of 243 polypoidal lesions were confluent hypo-AF with hyper-AF ring (49.8%), confluent hypo-AF (22.6%), hyper-AF with hypo-AF ring (3.7%), granular hypo-AF (7.0%), blocked hypo-AF due to hemorrhage (8.6%), and polyps without apparent AF changes (8.2%). For 146 branching vascular networks (BVNs), 97.3% were granular hypo-AF, and others were blocked hypo-AF due to hemorrhage.


In eyes with treatment-naive and active PCV, the polypoidal lesions and BVNs induce characteristic FAF changes. FAF images provide reliable adjunct reference for the diagnosis of PCV.


Autofluorescence Polypoidal choroidal vasculopathy Treatment-naive Active Polypoidal lesion Branching vascular network 



We also thank Yanjun Xie for collecting the medical records. Additionally, Xinyu Zhao wants to thank, in particular, the invaluable support received from Shengzhi Liu over the years.

Author contributions

Xin-yu Zhao carried out the entire procedure including the collection of medical records, image evaluation, statistical analysis, drafting the manuscript, and manuscript revision. You-xin Chen conceived of the study, coordinated and participated in the entire process of drafting, and revised the manuscript. Song Xia contributed to image evaluation and manuscript revision. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.

Funding information

No funding was received for this research.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

All authors certify that they have no affiliations with or involvement in any organization or entity with any financial interest (such as honoraria; educational grants; participation in speakers’ bureaus; membership, employment, consultancies, stock ownership, or other equity interest; and expert testimony or patent-licensing arrangements) or nonfinancial interest (such as personal or professional relationships, affiliations, knowledge, or beliefs) in the subject matter or materials discussed in this manuscript.

Ethical approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards. For this type of study, formal consent is not required.

Informed consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Ophthalmology, Peking Union Medical College HospitalChinese Academy of Medical SciencesBeijingChina

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