Central serous chorioretinopathy

What is it?

Central serous chorioretinopathy is when fluid builds up under the retina. This can distort vision. As a result, a small detachment forms under the retina, causing vision to become distorted.

Central serous chorioretinopathy usually affects just one eye at a time, but both eyes can be affected at the same time.


Symptoms of central serous chorioretinopathy can include:

  • distorted, dimmed, or blurred central vision
  • a dark area in your central vision
  • straight lines may appear bent, crooked or irregular in your affected eye
    objects may appear smaller or further away than they are
  • when you look at a white object, it may appear to have a brownish tinge or appear duller in color

Risk factors

Men in their 30s to 50s are more likely to develop central serous chorioretinopathy than women. Stress is a major risk factor. People under a lot of stress may be more likely to develop central serous chorioretinopathy.
Other risk factors for central serous chorioretinopathy are:
– use of steroids (by mouth, through a vein or even inhaled)
– helicobacter pylori infection (a type of bacteria that can infect the stomach)
– autoimmune disease (when the body attacks its own tissues)
– sleep disturbances like insomnia (having trouble falling asleep or staying asleep)
– type A behavior (aggressive and competitive behavior)
– hypertension (high blood pressure)


Your ophthalmologist looks at your retina.
He or she will then take special photographs of your eye. During fluorescein angiography, a dye is injected into a vein in your arm. The dye travels throughout the body, including your eyes.
Optical coherence tomography (OCT) also helps your doctor look at the retina. A machine scans the back of the eye and provides detailed three-dimensional pictures of the retina. This helps measure retinal thickness and find swelling of the retina.


Most cases of central serous chorioretinopathy clear up in one or two months without any treatment. During this time, your ophthalmologist will look at your eye to see if the liquid is going away. Sometimes there is severe vision loss or the leakage does not go away. In these cases, laser treatment or photodynamic therapy may be used. These treatments can seal the leak and restore vision.
Most people with central serous chorioretinopathy regain good vision even without treatment. But vision may not be as good as it was before the condition. About half of patients who have had central serous chorioretinopathy will have it return. It is important to have regular follow-up exams with your ophthalmologist. This is because long-term fluid accumulation can lead to permanent vision loss.

Contact us for more information

This post is also available in: Italian