Objective: To compare background factors of the 2 most dominant subtypes of exudative age-related macular degeneration (AMD) in the Japanese population: typical AMD and polypoidal choroidal vasculopathy (PCV). Design: Cross-sectional comparison. Participants: Consecutive patients with typical AMD (n = 89) and PCV (n = 138) for the primary survey. For the secondary survey, the number of participants was extended to include 148 typical AMD and 170 PCV patients. All the patients included in the present study had been followed up at The University of Tokyo Hospital outpatient macular clinic. Methods: Background data on gender; age; body mass index; smoking; alcohol consumption; and histories of hypertension, diabetes mellitus (DM), hyperlipidemia, ischemic heart disease, stroke, intensive light exposure, central serous chorioretinopathy (CSC), cataract surgery, glaucoma, and steroid use were obtained mainly through interview. The interviewers were masked to the subtype diagnosis of AMD. Univariate and multivariate logistic regression analyses were performed to identify differences in the background factors between typical AMD and PCV. In the secondary survey, the association of a history of CSC and PCV was confirmed further, and funduscopic findings of an atrophic retinal pigment epithelial (RPE) tract and focal photocoagulation scars that could indicate a history of CSC were investigated. Main Outcome Measures: Frequency and mean of background factors in patients with typical AMD or PCV. Results: The 2 groups showed similar backgrounds with the exception of their histories of DM and CSC. A history of DM was more frequent in typical AMD (24.7% vs. 13.0% in the primary survey; P = 0.027), whereas a history of CSC was more prevalent in PCV (3.4% vs. 14.7% in the secondary survey; P = 0.0005). Funduscopic findings of an atrophic RPE tract or focal photocoagulation scars were found more frequently in PCV (0.7% vs. 7.6%; P = 0.002). Conclusions: Background factors of typical AMD and PCV are similar but not identical. A history of DM and CSC are more frequent in typical AMD and PCV, respectively. Financial Disclosure(s): The author(s) have no proprietary or commercial interest in any materials discussed in this article.