Choroidal neovascularization (CNV) is the most common cause of legal blindness in older adults in the United States. The most common cause for CNV in this age group is age-related macular degeneration, a condition manifesting with drusen (particularly soft drusen) and pigmentary alterations in the macular region. CNV can occur in younger people (< 50 years), who usually do not have conspicuous drusen or pigmentary abnormalities. In this age group CNV may occur as a secondary manifestation of many inherited and acquired conditions such as angioid streaks, high myopia, trauma, choroidal tumors, familial macular dystrophies, and inflammatory retinochoroidopathies. Occasionally, CNV in young people has no apparent antecedent cause, and these cases are termed “idiopathic CNV.” This review examines the common reasons for CNV in young adults, with reference to some of the older literature as well as to recently published papers.