Whorl pattern keratopathies in veterinary and human patients

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2 Scopus citations


The course travelled by corneal epithelial cells from their stem cell niche at the limbus toward the vertex of the cornea is normally not evident due to their transparency, but in certain conditions, the epithelial cells can be rendered visible to the clinician. In such cases, the pathway taken by epithelial cells can manifest as a whorl pattern described using a variety of terms including hurricane keratitis/keratopathy, vortex keratopathy, whorl keratopathy, cornea verticillata, and at times, named after causative agents as exemplified by amiodarone keratopathy. Here, we briefly discuss the terminology used and the spectrum of conditions that can result in keratopathies with whorl patterns in human patients. We review the manifestations of such patterns in veterinary patients and discuss the state of understanding of the underlying forces that create the whorl distribution of epithelial cells on the ocular surface.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)661-667
Number of pages7
JournalVeterinary Ophthalmology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 1 2018


  • cornea verticillata
  • corneal epithelium
  • hurricane keratopathy
  • pigmentation
  • vortex keratopathy
  • whorl pattern

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • veterinary(all)


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