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Int J Ophthalmol. 2011;4(4):433-8. doi: 10.3980/j.issn.2222-3959.2011.04.21. Epub 2011 Aug 18.

Potential role of retina as a biomarker for progression of Parkinson's disease.

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  • 1Department of Neurology, Xiangya Hospital, Central-South University, 87 Xiangya Road, Changsha 410008, Hunan Province, China.


Optical coherence tomography (OCT) noninvasively quantifies the thickness of the retinal nerve fiber layer (RNFL). OCT has been studied in several neuro-ophthalmic conditions, including Parkinson's disease (PD). Recent studies suggest that the quantitative analysis of RNFL can be precisely and noninvasively done by OCT scans and the results suggest that the thickness of RNFL is significantly decreased in patients with PD compared with age-matched controls and the foveal retinal thickness correlates with disease severity in PD. In this article, the application of OCT imaging of the retina in PD was reviewed. Literature survey of PubMed was carried out using the search terms of "Optical Coherence Tomography" combined with "Parkinson's Disease" and "retinal nerve fiber layer" (without restriction to the year of publication). Some related articles were also included. The search was completed in Jul. 2011 and revised and updated as necessary. The aim of this article is to review the current literatures on the use of optical coherence tomography in patients affected by PD and to enhance its use in clinical practice in neuro-ophthalmology.


Parkinson disease; optical coherence tomography; retinal nerve fiber layer thickness

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