Clinical characteristics of Vogt-Koyanagi-Harada syndrome in Chinese patients

Ophthalmology. 2007 Mar;114(3):606-14. doi: 10.1016/j.ophtha.2006.07.040. Epub 2006 Nov 21.


Purpose: To characterize the clinical features of Vogt-Koyanagi-Harada syndrome (VKH) in Chinese patients.

Design: Retrospective noncomparative case series.

Participants: A total of 410 consecutive VKH patients examined from August 1995 to April 2005.

Methods: Charts of these patients were reviewed according to international VKH criteria. Patients who consulted us within 2 weeks after a uveitis attack were classified into group 1; between 2 weeks and 2 months into group 2; and after 2 months into group 3. The history and clinical findings of all of the patients were reviewed. Laser flare-cell photometry, fundus fluorescein angiography, indocyanine green angiography, optical coherence tomography, B-scan ultrasonography, and ultrasound biomicroscopy were performed in certain cases. Corticosteroids were mainly used to treat patients in groups 1 and 2, whereas cyclosporine or chlorambucil in combination with corticosteroids were prescribed for patients in group 3.

Main outcome measures: Demographics, clinical presentation, and ancillary examinations of the patients in all 3 groups.

Results: The patients were diagnosed as having either complete (n = 273), incomplete (n = 76), or probable (n = 61) VKH syndrome. Exudative retinal detachment and either choroiditis or chorioretinitis were the main findings in group 1. Posterior uveitis with mild to moderate anterior uveitis simulating a nongranulomatous inflammation as evidenced by dust keratic precipitates, anterior chamber cells, and flare was noted in group 2. Recurrent granulomatous anterior uveitis with a "sunset glow" fundus was observed in group 3. Complicated cataract was the most common complication in the patients in group 3. At the final visit, the uveitis was completely controlled in all patients and a best-corrected visual acuity of <20/200 was 1.9%/eye-year, 1.2%/eye-year, and 6%/eye-year in groups 1, 2, and 3, respectively.

Conclusion: Vogt-Koyanagi-Harada syndrome in Chinese patients is characterized by early posterior uveitis, and if the syndrome is not controlled, subsequent recurrent granulomatous anterior uveitis. Good visual prognosis is possible if the patients are managed according to a tailored immunosuppressive treatment protocol.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Asians*
  • Cataract / complications
  • Child
  • Chorioretinitis / complications
  • Choroiditis / complications
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunosuppressive Agents / therapeutic use
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Retinal Detachment / complications
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Uveitis, Anterior / complications
  • Uveitis, Anterior / pathology
  • Uveitis, Posterior / complications
  • Uveomeningoencephalitic Syndrome / complications*
  • Uveomeningoencephalitic Syndrome / drug therapy
  • Uveomeningoencephalitic Syndrome / ethnology*
  • Uveomeningoencephalitic Syndrome / pathology
  • Visual Acuity


  • Immunosuppressive Agents