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Ute E. K. Wolf-Schnurrbusch, Volker Enzmann, Christian K. Brinkmann, Sebastian Wolf; Morphologic Changes in Patients with Geographic Atrophy Assessed with a Novel Spectral OCT–SLO Combination. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2008;49(7):3095-3099. doi: 10.1167/iovs.07-1460.
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purpose. To investigate the appearance of geographic atrophy in high-resolution optical coherence tomography (OCT) images, the fundus autofluorescence (FAF) pattern, and infrared images simultaneously recorded with a novel combined OCT-scanning laser ophthalmology (SLO) system.
methods. Patients aged over 50 years with geographic atrophy secondary to dry age-related macular degeneration (ARMD) were assessed in a prospective cross-sectional study by means of simultaneous spectral OCT-SLO (Spectralis HRA+OCT; Heidelberg Engineering, Heidelberg, Germany). The integrity of the retinal layers was analyzed in the apparently normal areas, the junctional zone between the normal retina and the geographic atrophy, and the atrophic area. The presence and integrity of the external limiting membrane, the photoreceptor inner segments, the outer segments, and the retinal pigment epithelium were assessed.
results. Fifty-two eyes of 52 patients (28 women, 24 men) aged 51 to 92 years were examined. Retinal layer alterations were documented, not only in atrophic zones, but also in junctional zones surrounding the geographic atrophy. Disintegration of the retinal layers began in the RPE and adjacent retinal layers, such as the photoreceptor inner and outer segments and external limiting membrane.
conclusions. Novel imaging modalities will provide further valuable insight into ARMD pathogenesis. The key to understanding the morphologic change lies in in vivo depiction of retinal layers by spectral OCT technology in combination with other imaging modalities such as FAF.
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