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Br J Ophthalmol. 2013 May;97(5):644-7. doi: 10.1136/bjophthalmol-2012-302918. Epub 2013 Feb 28.

Serpiginous-like choroiditis as a marker for tuberculosis in a non-endemic area.

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Manchester Royal Eye Hospital, Oxford Road, Manchester M13 9WL, UK.



To describe the increasing incidence of multifocal outer retinal and inner choroidal inflammation as a marker for intraocular tuberculosis in the UK, a non-endemic area.


Retrospective case series.


14 patients presented with serpiginous-like choroiditis over 10 years (seven within the last 2 years). Seven of 14 patients showed evidence of exposure to tuberculosis and received antituberculous treatment. 17 of 23 eyes showed stable or improved visual acuity. All with decreased acuity had direct macular involvement at presentation.


Multifocal outer retinal and inner choroidal inflammation is a marker for intraocular tuberculosis of increasing importance, even in a non-endemic area. Originally described as 'serpiginous-like choroiditis', the lesions are multifocal, irregular in shape, very numerous, widespread, often asymmetrical and often demonstrating both active and resolved lesions simultaneously. Active lesions show contiguous extension. We recommend that every patient with SLC should undergo testing for previous exposure to tuberculosis, and undergo antituberculous treatment if lesions are progressive and sight-threatening.

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