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Li Zhang, Kyungmoo Lee, Meindert Niemeijer, Robert F. Mullins, Milan Sonka, Michael D. Abràmoff; Automated Segmentation of the Choroid from Clinical SD-OCT. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2012;53(12):7510-7519. doi: 10.1167/iovs.12-10311.
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We developed and evaluated a fully automated 3-dimensional (3D) method for segmentation of the choroidal vessels, and quantification of choroidal vasculature thickness and choriocapillaris-equivalent thickness of the macula, and evaluated repeat variability in normal subjects using standard clinically available spectral domain optical coherence tomography (SD-OCT).
A total of 24 normal subjects was imaged twice, using clinically available, 3D SD-OCT. A novel, fully-automated 3D method was used to segment and visualize the choroidal vasculature in macular scans. Local choroidal vasculature and choriocapillaris-equivalent thicknesses were determined. Reproducibility on repeat imaging was analyzed using overlapping rates, Dice coefficient, and root mean square coefficient of variation (CV) of choroidal vasculature and choriocapillaris-equivalent thicknesses.
For the 6 × 6 mm2 macula-centered region as depicted by the SD-OCT, average choroidal vasculature thickness in normal subjects was 172.1 μm (95% confidence interval [CI] 163.7–180.5 μm) and average choriocapillaris-equivalent thickness was 23.1 μm (95% CI 20.0–26.2 μm). Overlapping rates were 0.79 ± 0.07 and 0.75 ± 0.06, Dice coefficient was 0.78 ± 0.08, CV of choroidal vasculature thickness was 8.0% (95% CI 6.3%–9.4%), and of choriocapillaris-equivalent thickness was 27.9% (95% CI 21.0%–33.3%).
Fully automated 3D segmentation and quantitative analysis of the choroidal vasculature and choriocapillaris-equivalent thickness demonstrated excellent reproducibility in repeat scans (CV 8.0%) and good reproducibility of choriocapillaris-equivalent thickness (CV 27.9%). Our method has the potential to improve the diagnosis and management of patients with eye diseases in which the choroid is affected.
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