Amiodarone Verticillata – Whorl Keratopathy (Video)

This video shows a cornea with amiodarone verticillata deposits. You can see these as a whorl pattern – the entity is also called whorl keratopathy or hurricane keratopathy. These deposits are benign, difficult to see, and rarely (if ever) have any visual significance.

Drugs that can cause this pattern: CACTI Mneumonic: chloroquine, amiodarone, chlorpromazine, tamoxifen, indomethacin.

In addition, you can presumably get a similar pattern with amodiaquine, meperidine, and with Fabry’s disease.

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This cornea has a subtle finding of linear deposits on the surface epithelium. This is called whorl keratopathy (also known as hurricane keratopathy or verticillata) and occurs secondary to several medications. This finding is usually subtle, and doesn’t seem to cause any visual symptoms.
Hurricane Keratopathy
This photograph shows an eye suffering from hurricane keratophathy. This occurs as a result of several medications (such as amiodarone) that deposit in the corneal surface.
Amiodarone cornea
Here you can see a close-up view of a cornea in a patient on amiodarone. Those subtle lines running horizontally are verticillata deposits that can form on the superficial layers of the cornea.
Dr. Timothy Root is a practicing ophthalmologist and cataract surgeon in Daytona Beach, Florida. His books, video lectures, and training resources can be found at:


  1. You are the best teacher!!!!!!!

    Love all your work here and with opthobook.

    Thank you for sharing your knowledge with us in such a good way.

  2. Sorry Dr. Root! Could you answer my question?
    How to carry out the differential diagnoses of amiodarone verticillata whorl keratopathy and Cogan’s (map-dot-fingerprint) dystrophy?

    Thanks in advance


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