Current management strategy of polypoidal choroidal vasculopathy

Indian J Ophthalmol. 2018 Dec;66(12):1727-1735. doi: 10.4103/ijo.IJO_975_18.


Polypoidal choroidal vasculopathy (PCV) is a retinal disorder commonly found in Asians presenting as neovascular age-related macular degeneration and is characterized by serous macular detachment, serous or hemorrhagic pigment epithelial detachment, subretinal hemorrhage, and occasionally visible orange-red subretinal nodular lesions. PCV is diagnosed using indocyanine green angiography (ICGA), and the lesions appear as polypoidal aneurysmal vascular lesions with or without abnormal branching vascular network. Although ICGA remains the gold standard for the diagnosis of PCV, various imaging modalities have also facilitated the diagnosis and monitoring of PCV. Recent advances in imaging technology including the use of high resolution spectral domain optical coherence tomography (OCT) and OCT angiography have provided new insights on the pathogenesis of PCV, suggesting a link between PCV and pachychoroid spectrum of macular disorders. With the evolving understanding on the pathogenesis and clinical characteristics of PCV, different therapeutic options have been proposed. These include intravitreal anti-vascular endothelial growth factor (anti-VEGF) monotherapy, combination therapy with anti-VEGF and verteporfin photodynamic therapy, and thermal laser photocoagulation. In recent years, major multi-center randomized clinical trials such as EVEREST, EVEREST II, and PLANET studies have been conducted to compare the efficacy and safety of various treatment options for PCV. This review aims to summarize the results of recent literature, clinical trials and studies to provide an update on the management options of PCV. An overall management strategy for PCV will also be proposed.

Keywords: Anti-VEGF therapy; neovascular age-related macular degeneration; photodynamic therapy; polypoidal choroidal vasculopathy.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Angiogenesis Inhibitors / administration & dosage*
  • Choroid / blood supply*
  • Choroid Diseases / diagnosis*
  • Choroid Diseases / drug therapy
  • Disease Management
  • Fluorescein Angiography / methods*
  • Fundus Oculi
  • Humans
  • Intravitreal Injections
  • Photochemotherapy / methods*
  • Polyps / diagnosis*
  • Polyps / drug therapy
  • Tomography, Optical Coherence / methods*
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor A / antagonists & inhibitors


  • Angiogenesis Inhibitors
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor A