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Arch Ophthalmol. 1999 Mar;117(3):329-39.

Basal linear deposit and large drusen are specific for early age-related maculopathy.

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Department of Ophthalmology, University of Alabama at Birmingham, 35294-0009, USA.



To determine the distributions of basal laminar and basal linear deposits in Bruch membrane (BM) with respect to age and early age-related maculopathy (ARM).


The foveas of 41 human eyes (<60 years [n = 9]; > or =60 years [n = 32]), preserved no later than 3.5 hours post mortem, were examined using light and electron microscopy. Ten eyes met histopathologic criteria of the Alabama Age-related Macular Degeneration Grading System for early ARM. We calculated the specificity, sensitivity, and odds ratios for the association of basal laminar and basal linear deposits with early ARM.


Both deposits occurred only in eyes older than 60 years. The highest specificities and sensitivities for early ARM were attained for eyes that had basal linear deposits or large (>125 microm) drusen, followed by eyes with any quantity of basal laminar deposits that also contained membranous debris. Eyes with ARM were 24 times more likely than age-matched control eyes to have basal linear deposits or large drusen (P = .002).


Basal linear deposits and large drusen with membranous contents constitute different morphologic forms of the same ARM-associated lesion and may be significant for progression to late ARM.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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