Published Date: July 29, 2023

Full Text Article

Blue-Light Fundus Autofluorescence (BAF), an Essential Modality for the Evaluation of Inflammatory Diseases of the Photoreceptors: An Imaging Narrative

Authors: Alessandro Mantovani, Carl P Herbort, Alireza Hedayatfar, Ioannis Papasavvas

Diagnostics (Basel). 2023 Jul 24;13(14):2466. doi: 10.3390/diagnostics13142466.


Our purpose is to describe blue-light fundus autofluorescence (BAF) features of inflammatory diseases of the outer retina characterised by photoreceptor damage. BAF from patients diagnosed with secondary and primary inflammatory photoreceptor damage were retrospectively analyzed and compared to other imaging modalities including fluorescein angiography (FA), indocyanine green angiography (ICGA), and spectral domain optical coherence tomography (SD-OCT). Multiple evanescent white dot syndrome (MEWDS), idiopathic multifocal choroiditis (MFC), acute posterior multifocal placoid pigment epitheliopathy (APMPPE), serpiginous choroiditis (SC), and acute syphilitic posterior placoid chorioretinitis (ASPPC), all cases corresponding to secondary photoreceptor diseases caused by inflammatory choriocapillaris nonperfusion, were included and compared to primary photoreceptor disease entities, including acute zonal occult outer retinopathy (AZOOR) and cancer-associated retinopathy (CAR). Both groups showed increased BAFs of variable intensity. In severe cases of APMPPE and ASPPC, BAF also showed hypoautofluorescent areas. In group 1 (secondary diseases) BAF hyperautofluorescent areas were associated with colocalized ICGA hypofluorescent areas, indicating choriocapillaris nonperfusion; whereas in group 2 (primary diseases), no ICGA signs were detected. The associated colocalized areas of hypofluorescence on ICGA in the first group, which were absent in the second group, were crucial to allow the differentiation between primary (photoreceptoritis) and secondary (choriocapillaritis) photoreceptor diseases. BAF patterns in inflammatory diseases of the outer retina can give relevant information on the photoreceptor and RPE involvement, with ICGA being crucial to detect concurring choriocapillaris damage and differentiating the two pathologies.

PMID: 37510210DOI: 10.3390/diagnostics13142466PMC: PMC10378479