Widefield Fluorescein Angiography in the Fellow Eyes of Patients with Presumed Unilateral Persistent Fetal Vasculature

Diana M. Laura, Patrick C. Staropoli, Nimesh A. Patel, Nicolas A. Yannuzzi, Ryan P. Nolan, Hasenin Al-Khersan, Kenneth C. Fan, Harry W. Flynn, Dhariana Acon, Catherine I. Negron, Audina M. Berrocal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: To examine the retinal vascular findings on widefield fluorescein angiography (FA) in the fellow eyes of patients with unilateral persistent fetal vasculature (PFV). Design: Retrospective case series. Participants: Consecutive patients with unilateral PFV evaluated by a single physician at an academic medical center from February 1, 2011, to November 30, 2018. Methods: Clinical and demographic information, including age, gender, race, ethnicity, affected eye, subtype, stalk origin, complications on presentation, length of follow-up, and examination findings, was reviewed using the electronic medical record. Fluorescein angiograms of the affected and fellow eyes were reviewed by 2 authors for characteristic retinal vascular abnormalities. Agreement between the authors’ scores was analyzed using Cohen's Kappa. Main Outcome Measures: Fluorescein angiography abnormalities, including peripheral vessel avascularity, aberrant circumferential vessels, terminal supernumerary branching, regional capillary dropout, terminal bulbing, abnormal choroidal flush, abnormal vessel straightening, and peripheral vessel leakage or dilation. Results: Inclusion criteria were met by 41 patients. The average age at initial visit was 10.0 months. The average length of follow-up was 36.4 months. Abnormalities on FA were seen in 31 (75.6%) fellow eyes: peripheral vessel avascularity in 27.5 (67.1%), aberrant circumferential vessels in 20 (48.8%), terminal supernumerary branching in 17 (41.5%), regional capillary dropout in 9 (22.0%), terminal bulbing in 6 (14.6%), abnormal choroidal flush in 3.5 (8.5%), and abnormal vessel straightening and peripheral vessel leakage in 2.5 (6.1%). Statistical analysis disclosed an overall observed agreement of 93.4% among the raters (κ = 0.84, P < 0.0001). Conclusions: Retinal vascular abnormalities seen in patients with unilateral PFV were present in the majority of fellow eyes. This suggests that unilateral PFV may in fact be a bilateral, asymmetric process, but the clinical significance of these subtle findings is not known.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)301-307
Number of pages7
JournalOphthalmology Retina
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2021


  • Fluorescein angiography
  • Persistent fetal vasculature

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology


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