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J Biomed Opt. 2008 Nov-Dec;13(6):064003. doi: 10.1117/1.2998480.

Retinal blood flow measurement by circumpapillary Fourier domain Doppler optical coherence tomography.

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University of Southern California, Doheny Eye Institute and Department of Ophthalmology, Keck School of Medicine, Los Angeles, California 90033, USA.


We present in vivo human total retinal blood flow measurements using Doppler Fourier domain optical coherence tomography (OCT). The scan pattern consisted of two concentric circles around the optic nerve head, transecting all retinal branch arteries and veins. The relative positions of each blood vessel in the two OCT conic cross sections were measured and used to determine the angle between the OCT beam and the vessel. The measured angle and the Doppler shift profile were used to compute blood flow in the blood vessel. The flows in the branch veins was summed to give the total retinal blood flow at one time point. Each measurement of total retinal blood flow was completed within 2 s and averaged. The total retinal venous flow was measured in one eye each of two volunteers. The results were 52.90+/-2.75 and 45.23+/-3.18 microlmin, respectively. Volumetric flow rate positively correlated with vessel diameter. This new technique may be useful in the diagnosis and treatment of optic nerve and retinal diseases that are associated with poor blood flow, such as glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy.

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