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Patient Education: Central Serous Retinopathy (CSR)

 

Central Serous Retinopathy (CSR), also known as Central Serous Chorioretinopathy, is a condition caused by fluid leakage or blister formation in the macular area.  It is usually idiopathic (no obvious cause can be found) but may be associated with systemic hypertension, systemic and inhaled steroids, and/or pregnancy.  Stress or a disturbing psychological event often precedes the onset of CSR.  CSR typically occurs in young to middle aged adults ranging from 20-50 years of age, men more frquently than women.

CSR is related to dysfunction in the Retinal Pigment Epithelium (RPE).  One of the many functions of the RPE is to keep fluid from leaking out of the choroidal vascular area into the area under the retinal surface.  CSR develops when fluid from the choroidal vascular layer passes through the RPE to accumulate underneath the retina forming a blister.

Symptoms may include acute blurring of central vision and distortion (straight lines appear wavy).

Your eye specialist can diagnose CSR with an internal examination of the eye.  Additional testing, such as fluorescein angiography, indocyanne green angiography, and optical coherence tomography (OCT) may need to be performed to confirm the diagnosis and determine the best treatment option.

With CSR, most cases are spontaneous and a full recovery occurs between 1 and 6 months.  Some patients with non-resolving CSR may require laser treatment or PDT (photodynamic therapy).