Long-term follow-up of patients with birdshot retinochoroidopathy treated with systemic immunosuppression

Matthias D. Becker, Michael S. Wertheim, Justine R. Smith, James T. Rosenbaum

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

46 Scopus citations


Purpose: Birdshot retinochoroidopathy (BRC) is a rare uveitis syndrome of presumed autoimmune etiology. Therapy with systemic and periocular corticosteroids is of inconsistent efficacy, attendant with numerous potential long-term side effects. Corticosteroid-sparing strategies with agents such as cyclosporine A or azathioprine have been suggested for this disease. Methods: We retrospectively reviewed the medical charts of patients with BRC who were evaluated consecutively at a tertiary-care, referral-based North American uveitis clinic over a 15-year period. Results: Eleven Caucasian patients (22 eyes) were diagnosed with BRC, representing approximately 1% of all cases seen at the uveitis clinic. HLA-A29 was positive in all 11 patients. We elected to treat five patients with azathioprine, methotrexate, cyclosporine A, mycophenolate mofetil, and/or IvIg, as well as systemic or periocular corticosteroid injections. The median period of follow-up for the five treated patients was six years (range: 8 months-13 years). Inflammation was reduced or stabilized in five of five patients. Conclusion: Although the definitive strategy for the management of BRC is unknown, control of intraocular inflammation and preservation of vision is possible with corticosteroid-sparing immunosuppressive agents.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)289-293
Number of pages5
JournalOcular Immunology and Inflammation
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 2005
Externally publishedYes


  • Birdshot syndrome
  • Immunosuppression
  • Uveitis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Ophthalmology


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