Send to

Choose Destination
Front Psychiatry. 2014 Feb 25;5:22. doi: 10.3389/fpsyt.2014.00022. eCollection 2014.

Detection of Retinal Nerve Fiber Layer Defects in Alzheimer's Disease Using SD-OCT.

Author information

Department of Ophthalmology, Medical Faculty Mannheim, Ruprecht-Karls-University Heidelberg , Mannheim , Germany.
Division of Geriatric Psychiatry, Central Institute of Mental Health, Medical Faculty Mannheim, Ruprecht-Karls-University Heidelberg , Mannheim , Germany.
Department of Neurology, SMZ-Ost Donauspital , Vienna , Austria.



Our aim is to examine the clinical value of spectral-domain optical coherence tomography (Spectralis OCT) to detect retinal nerve fibre layer defects in patients with clinically defined Alzheimer's disease (AD).


This cross-sectional study included 22 patients with AD (mean age: 75.9 ± 6.1 years) and 22 healthy age- and sex-matched controls. Neuro-ophthalmologic examinations and a series of high-resolution OCT examinations of the peripapillary retinal nerve fiber layer (RNFL) thickness using the Spectralis 3.5-mm circle scan protocol with ART-Modus and eye tracking were obtained, and compared to age- and sex-matched healthy control subjects.


Patients with AD showed a significant decrease in RNFL thickness in the nasal superior sector compared to the control group (101.0 ± 18.18 μm versus 122.8 ± 28.08 μm; P < 0.0001). In all other sectors, independently of disease duration, no significant difference in RNFL thickness compared to controls was detected. Using the advanced age- and gender-matched measurement model, 32 out of 42 eyes (76.19%) as pathologic with 67 abnormal sectors were detected.


As examined by spectral-domain OCT, patients with mild to moderate stages of AD showed a significant reduction of RNFL thickness in the nasal superior sector. Nevertheless, successive studies are needed.


Alzheimer’s disease; dementia; optical coherence tomography; retinal nerve fiber layer; retinal nerve fiber layer thickness

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Frontiers Media SA Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center