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Acta Ophthalmol. 2012 May;90(3):e179-84. doi: 10.1111/j.1755-3768.2011.02310.x. Epub 2011 Nov 22.

Prevalence of early and late stages of physiologic PVD in emmetropic elderly population.

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Department of Ophthalmology, Medical University Graz, Graz, Austria.



To investigate the early and late stages of posterior vitreous detachment (PVD) in the foveal area in correlation with age and gender.


Three hundred and thirty-five emmetropic eyes of 271 Caucasian patients (216 women/119 men) were examined by optical coherence tomography (OCT) and ultrasound (US). Eyes were classified into groups according to the patients age (up to 69.9; 70-74.9; 75-79.9; over 80 years) and to the clinical findings [Vitreous state: Detached in US; Detached in OCT; Foveal adhesion (FA); Attached vitreous].


The mean age was 76 ± 8 ranging from 44 to 89 years in female and 72 ± 10 ranging from 46 to 87 years in male subjects. The vitreous was attached in 32% of all eyes, 18.5% had FA, 18.5% were detached in OCT and 68% were detached in US. While prevalence of FA decreases with increasing age, OCT-diagnosed detachments did not change significantly with age. Between the ages of 70 and 75, an increase in PVD rates occurred. The prevalence of PVD was similar in both genders. Women were significantly older than men in the late-stage PVD in the eyes.


The use of OCT and US enabled us to detect a partial or total PVD in 80% of the eyes. A sudden increase in late-stage PVD between the ages of 70 and 75 was observed, correlating with the reported age prevalence of various macular diseases. In contrast to myopics, both genders of elderly emmetropics have a similar prevalence of PVD.

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