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Roopa Vemala, Sobha Sivaprasad, John L. Barbur; Detection of Early Loss of Color Vision in Age-Related Macular Degeneration – With Emphasis on Drusen and Reticular Pseudodrusen. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2017;58(6):BIO247-BIO254. doi: 10.1167/iovs.17-21771.
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To evaluate chromatic sensitivity in patients with age-related macular degeneration (AMD) characterized by drusen and reticular pseudodrusen. To investigate whether the severity of color vision loss can distinguish between various stages of AMD and hence be used as an index of progression toward advanced AMD.
Chromatic sensitivity was measured by using the Color Assessment and Diagnosis (CAD) test in asymptomatic individuals with early and intermediate AMD and compared to normative data. All study participants had logMAR visual acuity of 0.3 or better. The CAD thresholds measured in eyes with and without reticular pseudodrusen were also compared and related to central macular thickness (CMT). Student's t-test P values < 0.05 were considered significant.
All early- and intermediate-AMD eyes (n = 90) had chromatic sensitivity loss in either RG (red/green) or YB (yellow/blue), or both (P < 0.0001) as compared to age-matched normal subjects. The eyes exhibited a range of CAD thresholds affecting both color mechanisms, but YB color thresholds were in general higher than RG thresholds (P < 0.001). Intermediate-AMD patients exhibited large intersubject variability. In general, eyes with reticular pseudodrusen and eyes with CMT < 200 μm had significantly higher CAD thresholds.
The anatomic integrity of cone photoreceptors remains relatively unaffected in early and intermediate stages of AMD. The processing of cone signals in the retina can, however, be heavily disrupted with subsequent loss of both YB and RG chromatic sensitivity. The greatest losses were observed in eyes with reticular pseudodrusen.
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