Polypoidal choroidal vasculopathy with large vascular network

Graefes Arch Clin Exp Ophthalmol. 2002 May;240(5):354-61. doi: 10.1007/s00417-002-0459-x. Epub 2002 Apr 6.


Purpose: To report characteristics of polypoidal choroidal vasculopathy (PCV) of large vascular networks that expand across the retinal vascular arcade.

Methods: Among 60 consecutive eyes diagnosed as having PCV by fluorescein and indocyanine green (ICG) angiography, 12 eyes (9 patients) showed large lesions. The clinical and angiographic features of these 12 eyes were studied retrospectively.

Results: Cases of large PCV typically showed dilated network vessels, which spread radially, and multiple polypoidal dilations at the end of the network vessels. Most of the polypoidal dilations formed clusters resembling bunches of grapes and caused large serous and/or hemorrhagic pigment epithelial detachments (PEDs). Among the 12 eyes, 5 showed rapid expansion of the lesions and became large PCVs within 3-24 months. In these eyes, ICG angiography revealed mesh-like choroidal vessels beneath the retinal pigment epithelium.

Conclusion: PCV with a large vascular network that expands across the vascular arcade is not uncommon. Some of these cases seems to have characteristics of choroidal neovascularization rather than choroidal vasculopathy. It is not easy to distinguish such cases from exudative age-related macular degeneration even though they showed typical findings of PCV on ICG angiography.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Choroid / blood supply*
  • Choroid Diseases / diagnosis*
  • Coloring Agents
  • Female
  • Fluorescein Angiography
  • Humans
  • Indocyanine Green
  • Male
  • Pigment Epithelium of Eye / pathology
  • Retinal Detachment / diagnosis


  • Coloring Agents
  • Indocyanine Green