Needle-shaped deposits on retinal surface in a case of ocular amyloidosis

Eur J Ophthalmol. May-Jun 2008;18(3):473-5. doi: 10.1177/112067210801800329.


Purpose: To report a case in which optical coherence tomography (OCT) showed needle-shaped deposits on the retinal surface oriented toward the vitreous cavity and immunohistochemical findings suggested light chain-related amyloidosis.

Methods: A 59-year-old man with no systemic complications had bilateral neovascular glaucoma and vitreous opacities in the right eye. Vitrectomy was conducted on the right eye and the excised vitreous was examined histopathologically.

Results: Glass wool-like opacities were observed during vitrectomy. Postoperative fundus examination of the right eye showed retinal hemorrhage and white deposits around blood vessels and on retinal surface. Fluorescein angiography revealed hyperfluorescence of the optic disc, non-perfusion areas, and vascular focal staining. OCT depicted needle-shaped deposits perpendicular to the retinal surface oriented toward the vitreous. Histologic examination of deposits revealed positive reaction for Congo red stain, and immunohistochemical examination demonstrated positive reactivities for anti-lambda and anti-kappa light chains (precursors of amyloid protein), suggesting a diagnosis of light chain-related amyloidosis.

Conclusions: In this case, OCT showed needle-shaped deposits perpendicular to the retinal surface. Special staining with Congo red revealed the deposit to be amyloid deposition. Immunohistochemical staining suggested light chain-related amyloidosis. Vascular obstructive lesions and neovascular glaucoma secondary to retinal vascular damage in amyloidosis warrant particular attention.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Amyloidosis / diagnosis*
  • Amyloidosis / metabolism
  • Eye Diseases / diagnosis
  • Eye Diseases / surgery
  • Fluorescein Angiography
  • Glaucoma, Neovascular / diagnosis
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Retinal Diseases / diagnosis*
  • Retinal Diseases / metabolism
  • Serum Amyloid A Protein / metabolism*
  • Tomography, Optical Coherence
  • Vitrectomy
  • Vitreous Body / pathology


  • Serum Amyloid A Protein