May 2004
Volume 45, Issue 13
Free
ARVO Annual Meeting Abstract  |   May 2004
Refractive index of the human corneal epithelium
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • B. Vasudevan
    Optometry, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, ON, Canada
  • J. Sivak
    Optometry, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, ON, Canada
  • T. Simpson
    Optometry, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, ON, Canada
  • Footnotes
    Commercial Relationships  B. Vasudevan, None; J. Sivak, None; T. Simpson, None.
  • Footnotes
    Support  NSERC Canada
Investigative Ophthalmology & Visual Science May 2004, Vol.45, 2882. doi:
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      B. Vasudevan, J. Sivak, T. Simpson; Refractive index of the human corneal epithelium . Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2004;45(13):2882.

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

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Abstract

Abstract: : Purpose:Regional variation of human corneal refractive index has not received much of attention in the literature. We examined refractive index at three corneal loci and measured epithelial thickness at the same positions to evaluate the influence of refractive index on this measurement. Methods: 10 human subjects with a mean age of 27 years participated in the study. Refractive index was measured at the centre, nasal and temporal periphery of the cornea using a portable Abbe refractometer mounted on a slitlamp. Corneal epithelial thickness was also measured at these locations by Optical Coherence Tomography. Results: The mean (±SD) refractive index in the centre, nasal and temporal periphery of the cornea were 1.397(±0.001), 1.394(±0.001) and 1.394(± 0.001) respectively. There was a 0.21% decrease in refractive index at the nasal and temporal periphery. The mean (±SD) epithelial thickness of the cornea in the centre, nasal and temporal periphery were 52.83(±4.9µm), 66.28(±3.77µm) and 64.60(±4.53µm) respectively. The epithelial thickness was 25.45% higher nasally and 22.27% temporally. Conclusions: Refractive index and thickness of the human corneal epithelium show regional variation, with refractive index of the epithelium showing an inverse relation to the thickness. However, the change in refractive index cross the cornea cannot completely account for the variation in epithelial thickness measured using Optical Coherence Tomography.

Keywords: cornea: epithelium • cornea: clinical science • optical properties 
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