Serpiginous Choroiditis

  • Narsing A. RaoEmail author
  • Julie You Kwon
Part of the Retina Atlas book series (RA)


Serpiginous choroiditis (SC) is a rare, progressive, recurrent, idiopathic posterior choroidal inflammatory disease affecting retinal pigment epithelium (RPE), choriocapillaris, and choroid (Vasconcelos-Santos et al. 2010). It is characterized by a geographic pattern of choroiditis that typically extends from the peripapillary area in a serpentine, pseudopodial fashion. It was first described by Hutchinson who noted a pattern of choroidal inflammation that appeared progressive with active borders in otherwise healthy patients or in patients with tuberculosis or syphilis (Hutchinson 1900). In 1970, Gass coined the entity serpiginous choroiditis, because of its wavy margins at the borders and recurrent choroidal inflammation that spread in a centrifugal fashion (Gass 1970).


  1. Abrez H, Biswas J, Sudharshan S. Clinical profile, treatment, and visual outcome of serpiginous choroiditis. Ocul Immunol Inflamm. 2007;15(4):325–35. Scholar
  2. Arantes TE, Matos K, Garcia CR, Silva TG, Sabrosa AS, Muccioli C. Fundus autofluorescence and spectral domain optical coherence tomography in recurrent serpiginous choroiditis: case report. Ocul Immunol Inflamm. 2011;19(1):39–41. Scholar
  3. Biswas J, Narain S, Das D, Ganesh SK. Pattern of uveitis in a referral uveitis clinic in India. Int Ophthalmol. 1996;20(4):223–8.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. Broekhuyse RM, Van Herck M, Pinckers AJLG, Winkens HJ, Van Vugt AHM, Ryckaert S, Deutman AF. Immune responsiveness to retinal S-antigen and opsin in serpiginous choroiditis and other retinal diseases. Doc Ophthalmol. 1988;69(1):83–93. Scholar
  5. Chisholm IH, Gass JD, Hutton WL. The late stage of serpiginous (geographic) choroiditis. Am J Ophthalmol. 1976;82(3):343–51.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Christmas NJ, Oh KT, Oh DM, Folk JC. Long-term follow-up of patients with serpiginous choroiditis. Retina. 2002;22(5):550–6.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Franceschetti A. A curious affection of the Fundus oculi: Helicoid peripapillar chorioretinal degeneration. Its relation to pigmentary paravenous chorioretinal degeneration. Doc Ophthalmol. 1962;16(1):81–110. Scholar
  8. Gallagher MJ, Yilmaz T, Cervantes-Castañeda RA, Foster CS. The characteristic features of optical coherence tomography in posterior uveitis. Br J Ophthalmol. 2007;91(12):1680–5. Scholar
  9. Gass JD. Stereoscopic atlas of macular diseases: a funduscopic and angiographic presentation. St. Louis: CV MOsby; 1970. p. 66.Google Scholar
  10. Gass JDM. Stereoscopic atlas of macular diseases. Maryland Heights: Mosby; 1997.Google Scholar
  11. Giovannini A, Mariotti C, Ripa E, Scassellati-Sforzolini B. Indocyanine green angiographic findings in serpiginous choroidopathy. Br J Ophthalmol. 1996;80(6):536–40.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Hamilton AM, Bird AC. Geographical choroidopathy. Br J Ophthalmol. 1974;58(9):784–97. Scholar
  13. Hardy RA, Schatz H. Macular geographic helicoid choroidopathy. Arch Ophthalmol. 1987;105(9):1237–42. Scholar
  14. Hutchinson. Serpiginous choroiditis in scrofulous subjects: choroidal lupus. Arch Surg (Lond). 1900;11:126–35.Google Scholar
  15. Jabs DA, Rosenbaum JT, Foster CS, Holland GN, Jaffe GJ, Louie JS, et al. Guidelines for the use of immunosuppressive drugs in patients with ocular inflammatory disorders: recommendations of an expert panel. Am J Ophthalmol. 2000;130(4):492–513. Scholar
  16. Jampol LM, Orth D, Daily MJ, Rabb MF. Subretinal neovascularization with geographic (serpiginous) choroiditis. Am J Ophthalmol. 1979;88(4):683–9.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Laatikainen L, Erkkila H. A follow-up study on serpiginous choroiditis. Acta Ophthalmol. 1981;59(5):707–18.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Mansour AM, Jampol LM, Packo KH, Hrisomalos NF. Macular serpiginous choroiditis. Retina. 1988;8(2):125–31.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. McCannel CA, Holland GN, Helm CJ, Cornell PJ, Winston JV, Rimmer TG. Causes of uveitis in the general practice of ophthalmology. UCLA Community-Based Uveitis Study Group. Am J Ophthalmol. 1996;121(1):35–46.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Mirza RG, Jampol LM. White spot syndromes and related diseases In: Retina SJ, editor. Retina. Elsevier Mosby, Elsevier Inc, Fourth Edition; 2006. p. 2.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Nazari Khanamiri H, Rao NA. Serpiginous choroiditis and infectious multifocal serpiginoid choroiditis. Surv Ophthalmol. 2013;58(3):203–32. Scholar
  22. Punjabi OS, Rich R, Davis JL, Gregori G, Flynn HW Jr, Lujan BJ, et al. Imaging serpiginous choroidopathy with spectral domain optical coherence tomography. Ophthalmic Surg Lasers Imaging. 2008;39(4 Suppl):S95–8.Google Scholar
  23. Quillen DA, Blodi BA. Clinical retina. Chicago: AMA Press; 2002.Google Scholar
  24. Schatz H, Maumenee AE, Patz A. Geographic helicoid peripapillary choroidopathy: clinical presentation and fluorescein angiographic findings. Trans Am Acad Ophthalmol Otolaryngol. 1974;78(5):OP747–61.Google Scholar
  25. Wu JS, Lewis H, Fine SL, Grover DA, Green RW. Clinicopathologic findings in a patient with serpiginous choroiditis and treated choroidal neovascularization. Retina. 1989;9(4):292–301.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.USC-Roski Eye Institute, Department of OphthalmologyUniversity of Southern CaliforniaLos AngelesUSA
  2. 2.Medical RetinaLos AngelesUSA

Personalised recommendations