PURPOSE: To assess ophthalmologic characteristics in patients and unaffected individuals in families with multiple members affected by central serous chorioretinopathy (CSC), both at presentation and long-term follow-up.
METHODS: In 103 subjects from 23 families with at least 2 affected patients with CSC per family, prospective extensive ophthalmologic examination was performed, including best-corrected visual acuity, indirect ophthalmoscopy, digital color fundus photography, optical coherence tomography, fundus autofluorescence, and fluorescein angiography imaging. From these, 24 individuals from 6 families had undergone extensive ophthalmologic examination in either 1994 or 1995 and were followed up in this study.
RESULTS: Subretinal fluid accumulation on optical coherence tomography and/or "hot spots" of leakage on fluorescein angiography indicative of CSC were detected in 45 of 103 phenotyped subjects (44%). Findings suggestive of CSC, but without the presence of subretinal fluid on optical coherence tomography and/or "hot spots" of leakage on fluorescein angiography, were observed in an additional 27 family members (26%). In 4 of 17 previously nonaffected subjects (24%) from the 24 individuals that were followed up after more than 20 years, we found more severe abnormalities.
CONCLUSION: Extensive ophthalmologic phenotyping resulted in the detection of (suggestive) CSC in 52% of family members of patients with CSC. Genetic factors may play an important role in these specific CSC cases. Moreover, during follow-up, progressive disease can occur in a noteworthy number of patients.