June 1997
Volume 38, Issue 7
Free
Articles  |   June 1997
Submicrometer precision biometry of the anterior segment of the human eye.
Author Affiliations
  • W Drexler
    Institut für Medizinische Physik, Universität Wien, Austria.
  • A Baumgartner
    Institut für Medizinische Physik, Universität Wien, Austria.
  • O Findl
    Institut für Medizinische Physik, Universität Wien, Austria.
  • C K Hitzenberger
    Institut für Medizinische Physik, Universität Wien, Austria.
  • H Sattmann
    Institut für Medizinische Physik, Universität Wien, Austria.
  • A F Fercher
    Institut für Medizinische Physik, Universität Wien, Austria.
Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science June 1997, Vol.38, 1304-1313. doi:
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    • Get Citation

      W Drexler, A Baumgartner, O Findl, C K Hitzenberger, H Sattmann, A F Fercher; Submicrometer precision biometry of the anterior segment of the human eye.. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 1997;38(7):1304-1313.

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      © ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)

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Abstract

PURPOSE: To demonstrate the feasibility of measuring the anterior structures of the human eye by partial coherence interferometry and to determine its precision for eyes under normal and cycloplegic conditions. METHODS: The dual-beam version of partial coherence interferometry, a recently developed noninvasive optical ranging technique, enables high resolution measurements of several intraocular distances with unprecedented precision. A modified, more sensitive scanning version of this technique was used to assess the central and peripheral corneal thickness, the anterior chamber depth, and the lens thickness of 20 healthy, emmetropic to moderately myopic eyes. Furthermore the anterior structures of three eyes were measured under cycloplegia (1% cyclopentolate) to investigate the influence on the precision of this technique after suppression of residual accommodations. RESULTS: The mean geometric precision (standard deviation) of the measurement of the central corneal thickness was 0.29 micron (range, 0.22 micron to 0.38 micron) and 0.43 micron (range, 0.27 micron to 0.56 micron) for the peripheral corneal thickness at a distance 2 mm from its apex. The precision for measuring the anterior chamber depth and the lens thickness for fixation at infinity was 8.7 microns (range, 3.9 microns to 16.8 microns) and 8.9 microns (rang, 2.9 microns to 14.4 microns) for noncycloplegic eyes and 1.9 microns (range, 1.7 microns to 2 microns) and 1.4 microns (range, 0.7 micron to 1.8 microns) for cycloplegic eyes, respectively. CONCLUSIONS: The dual-beam partial coherence interferometry enables fast, noninvasive, submicrometer precision biometry of the anterior segment of the eye. The precision of determining the anterior chamber depth and the lens thickness is more than one order of magnitude better than that of the currently used ultrasound and optical techniques, and it can be improved by a factor of 5 by using cycloplegia.

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