Choroidopathy of systemic lupus erythematosus

Q. D. Nguyen, H. S. Uy, E. K. Akpek, S. L. Harper, D. N. Zacks, C. S. Foster

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

106 Scopus citations


Purpose: To describe the ocular and systemic manifestations associated with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) choroidopathy. Methods: Three new cases of choroidopathy in patients with active SLE were described. Twenty five published cases of lupus choroidopathy were summarized. Results: There have been 28 cases of lupus choroidopathy (47 involved eyes) that have been reported in the English literature since 1968, including the three current cases. Only two of the patients were male. The choroidopathy was bilateral in 19 patients (68%). All 28 patients (100%) had active systemic vascular disease at the onset of their choroidopathy; 18 (64%) had nephropathy and 10 (36%) had central nervous system (CNS) lupus vasculitis. All but one of the patients had a known diagnosis of SLE at the onset of choroidopathy. 30 of the 47 involved eyes had presenting visual acuity of 20/40 or better; 14 eyes showed improvement in visual acuity with therapy. 23 patients (82%) had resolution of their choroidopathy when their systemic disease was brought under control. Despite treatment, 4 of the 28 patients (14%) died from complications of SLE. Conclusions: Although less known than retinopathy, lupus choroidopathy may be more common than generally appreciated. It usually serves as a sensitive indicator of lupus activity. The presence of SLE choroidopathy is generally indicative of coexistent (although sometimes occult) nephropathy, CNS vasculitis, and other SLE visceral lesions. Immunomodulation of the systemic disease can lead to improvement and resolution of the systemic vasculitis as well as the choroidopathy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)288-298
Number of pages11
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2000


  • Central nervous system (CNS)
  • Choroidopathy
  • Nephropathy
  • Retinopathy
  • Scleritis
  • Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE)
  • Vasculitis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Rheumatology


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