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Li Guo, Eduardo M. Normando, Shereen Nizari, David Lara, M. Francesca Cordeiro; Tracking Longitudinal Retinal Changes in Experimental Ocular Hypertension Using the cSLO and Spectral Domain-OCT. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2010;51(12):6504-6513. doi: 10.1167/iovs.10-5551.
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Involvement of the outer retina is controversial in glaucoma. The aim of this study was to test, first, whether the outer retina is affected in experimental ocular hypertension (OHT) and, second, whether whole retinal thickness can be used as a surrogate marker of glaucomatous change.
OHT was surgically induced in 20 Dark Agouti rats. Animals were imaged using a modified Spectralis OCT (Heidelberg Engineering, Heidelberg, Germany) at baseline and at 3 and 8 weeks after OHT induction. Measurements were recorded for whole and individual retinal layer thickness in four regions—temporal, superior, nasal, and inferior—around the optic nerve head.
Whole retinal thickness in normal eyes was 172.19 ± 5.17 μm, with no significant regional differences. OHT caused a significant reduction in whole retinal thickness and the outer nuclear layer (ONL) at 3 and 8 weeks (P < 0.05), along with the expected thinning of the retinal nerve fiber layer (RNFL). Whole retinal thickness correlated well with RNFL (P = 0.035) and ONL (P ≤ 0.001) changes. Sensitivity of RNFL and ONL to IOP exposure appeared greater at 3 than at 8 weeks. In addition, regional profiles were significantly altered in the ONL and RNFL after OHT induction.
Adaptation of the Spectralis OCT enables tracking of structural damage in experimental rat OHT. Here the authors show evidence of glaucomatous damage in the outer retinal layers of this model with significant regional changes and highlight whole retinal thickness in the rat as a useful surrogate marker of inner and outer retinal changes. The authors believe that the OCT data can provide useful information with regard to clinical management.
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