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Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD)

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Acute posterior multifocal placoid pigment epitheliopathy


Other Names for this Disease

  • Acute multifocal placoid pigment epitheliopathy
  • Acute placoid pigment epitheliopathy
  • AMPPE
  • APMPPE
  • Epitheliopathy, acute posterior multifocal placoid pigment
See Disclaimer regarding information on this site. Some links on this page may take you to organizations outside of the National Institutes of Health.

Your Question

My husband has been diagnosed with acute posterior multifocal placoid pigment epitheliopathy. Is the vision loss associated with this condition permanent?

Our Answer

We have identified the following information that we hope you find helpful. If you still have questions, please contact us.

What is acute posterior multifocal placoid pigment epitheliopathy?

Acute posterior multifocal placoid pigment epitheliopathy (APMPPE) is an acquired, inflammatory eye condition affecting the retina, retinal pigment epithelium (pigmented layer of the retina), and choroid. It usually affects both eyes and is characterized by multiple, yellow-white lesions in the back of the eye. The condition can significantly impair visual acuity if the macula is involved.[1] APMPPE typically resolves on its own in weeks to months. While the cause is unknown, about a third of cases appear to develop after a flu-like illness.[2] Non-ocular symptoms are uncommon, but cerebral vasculitis can be present and may cause permanent and/or severe neurological complications.[1]
Last updated: 9/9/2014

Is the vision loss associated with acute posterior multifocal placoid pigment epitheliopathy permanent?

In most cases, the disorder resolves within a few weeks without loss of visual acuity.[2] In many patients, visual acuity returns to the range of 20/20 to 20/40. Initial visual recovery is often rapid, but final recovery may take up to 6 months.[3] In a small number of cases, vision does not improve.[2][3][4] Many of these patients have permanent visual loss due to subretinal neovascularization. Others may have long-term functional ocular symptoms such as scotomata.[3]
Last updated: 12/30/2009

What is the long-term outlook for people with acute posterior multifocal placoid pigment epitheliopathy (APMPPE)?

In many affected people, visual acuity returns to the range of 20/20 to 20/40. However, some people have permanent vision loss or long-term functional ocular symptoms. Other ocular and non-ocular symptoms usually resolve on their own and are not life-threatening. In affected people with cerebral vasculitis, there can be permanent and/or severe neurological complications; there have been instances of death following an episode of cerebral vasculitis.[1]
Last updated: 9/9/2014

References
Other Names for this Disease
  • Acute multifocal placoid pigment epitheliopathy
  • Acute placoid pigment epitheliopathy
  • AMPPE
  • APMPPE
  • Epitheliopathy, acute posterior multifocal placoid pigment
See Disclaimer regarding information on this site. Some links on this page may take you to organizations outside of the National Institutes of Health.