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Ophthalmology. 2008 Dec;115(12):2132-40. doi: 10.1016/j.ophtha.2008.08.024.

Optic disc hemorrhage may be associated with retinal nerve fiber loss in otherwise normal eyes.

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Department of Ophthalmology, Seoul National University College of Medicine, Seoul National University Hospital, Seoul, Korea.



To evaluate quantitatively the structural damage of the peripapillary retinal nerve fiber layer (RNFL) in eyes with disc hemorrhage (DH).


Prospective cross-sectional study.


Seventy patients with DH (70 eyes; mean age +/- standard deviation, 60.0+/-11.8 years) and 100 healthy control subjects (100 eyes; mean age +/- standard deviation, 57.7+/-8.0 years) were enrolled from the Glaucoma Clinic of Seoul National University Hospital.


Normal eyes without DH (group 1: normal control group) served as controls. Eyes with DH were divided into the following groups: (1) eyes with a DH, accompanied by no visible RNFL defect according to red-free fundus photography and normal visual fields (group 2: DH only group); (2) eyes with a DH and a localized RNFL defect in the same quadrant, accompanied by normal visual fields (group 3: DH-preperimetric group); and (3) eyes with a DH and a localized RNFL defect in the same quadrant, accompanied by glaucomatous visual field defect in the corresponding hemifield location (group 4: DH-perimetric group). Optical coherence tomography (OCT)-measured RNFL thicknesses were compared.


Average and segmental (4 quadrants and 12 clock-hours) OCT-measured RNFL thicknesses.


The number of eyes in groups 1, 2, 3, and 4 was 100, 25, 22, and 23 eyes, respectively. The OCT-measured RNFL thickness was significantly different among the 4 groups in average RNFL thickness and in inferior, superior, and nasal quadrants (P<0.01, 1-way analysis of variance). On post hoc analysis, the eyes of groups 2 and 3 showed thinner average RNFL thickness than those of group 1, and the average RNFL thickness of group 4 was significantly lower than that of groups 2 and 3 (P<0.001, 1-way analysis of variance and Tukey's test). The OCT-measured RNFL thickness revealed a topographic relationship with the DH location.


Significant RNFL loss was already present in the DH only eyes with apparently normal RNFL configuration by red-free fundus photography, indicating that preperimetric changes of the RNFL are already present. These results suggest that OCT has the potential to detect subclinical or preperimetric RNFL loss in the eyes with DH.


The authors have no proprietary or commercial interest in any of the materials discussed in this article.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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