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Ophthalmology. 2011 Aug;118(8):1645-52. doi: 10.1016/j.ophtha.2011.01.037. Epub 2011 May 12.

The functional significance of foveal abnormalities in albinism measured using spectral-domain optical coherence tomography.

Author information

1
Ophthalmology Group, University of Leicester, Leicester, UK.

Abstract

PURPOSE:

The relationship between foveal abnormalities in albinism and best-corrected visual acuity (BCVA) is unclear. High-resolution spectral-domain optical coherence tomography (SD OCT) was used to quantify foveal retinal layer thicknesses and to assess the functional significance of foveal morphologic features in patients with albinism.

DESIGN:

Cross-sectional study.

PARTICIPANTS:

Forty-seven patients with albinism and 20 healthy control volunteers were recruited to the study.

METHODS:

Using high-resolution SD OCT, 7×7×2-mm volumetric scans of the fovea were acquired (3-μm axial resolution). The B scan nearest the center of the fovea was identified using signs of foveal development. The thickness of each retinal layer at the fovea and foveal pit depth were quantified manually using ImageJ software and were compared with BCVA.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES:

Total retinal thickness, foveal pit depth, photoreceptor layer thickness, and processing layer thickness in relation to BCVA.

RESULTS:

Total photoreceptor layer thickness at the fovea was correlated highly to BCVA (P = 0.0008; r = -0.501). Of the photoreceptor layers, the outer segment length was correlated most strongly to BCVA (P<0.0001; r = -0.641). In contrast, there was no significant correlation between either total retinal thickness or pit depth and BCVA (P>0.05). This was because of an inverse correlation between total photoreceptor layer thickness and total processing layer thickness (P<0.0001; r = -0.696).

CONCLUSIONS:

Neither the total retinal thickness nor the pit depth are reliable indicators of visual deficit, because patients with similar overall retinal thickness had widely varying foveal morphologic features. In albinism, the size of the photoreceptor outer segment was found to be the strongest predictor of BCVA. These results suggest that detailed SD OCT images of photoreceptor anatomic features provide a useful tool in assessing the visual potential in patients with albinism.

FINANCIAL DISCLOSURE(S):

The author(s) have no proprietary or commercial interest in any materials discussed in this article.

PMID:
21570122
DOI:
10.1016/j.ophtha.2011.01.037
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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