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Invest Ophthalmol Vis Sci. 2007 Jul;48(7):3154-60.

Peripapillary nerve fiber layer thickness profile determined with high speed, ultrahigh resolution optical coherence tomography high-density scanning.

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  • 1University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Eye Center, Eye and Ear Institute, Ophthalmology and Visual Science Research Center, Department of Ophthalmology, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15213, USA.



To determine the retinal nerve fiber layer (RNFL) thickness profile in the peripapillary region of healthy eyes.


Three-dimensional, Fourier/spectral domain optical coherence tomography (OCT) data were obtained as raster scan data (512 x 180 axial scans in a 6 x 6-mm region centered on the optic nerve head [ONH]) with high-speed, ultrahigh-resolution OCT (hsUHR-OCT) from 12 healthy subjects. RNFL thickness was measured on this three-dimensional data set with an in-house software program. The disc margin was defined subjectively in each image and RNFL thickness profiles relative to distance from the disc center were computed for quadrants and clock hours. A mixed-effects model was used to characterize the slope of the profiles.


Thickness profiles in the superior, inferior, and temporal quadrants showed an initial increase in RNFL thickness, an area of peak thickness, and a linear decrease as radial distance from the disc center increased. The nasal quadrant showed a constant linear decay without the initial RNFL thickening. A mixed-effects model showed that the slopes of the inferior, superior, and nasal quadrants differed significantly from the temporal slope (P = 0.0012, P = 0.0003, and P = 0.0004, respectively).


RNFL thickness is generally inversely related to the distance from the ONH center in the peripapillary region of healthy subjects, as determined by hsUHR-OCT. However, several areas showed an initial increase in RNFL, followed by a peak and a gradual decrease.

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