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Tomoko Mase, Akihiro Ishibazawa, Taiji Nagaoka, Harumasa Yokota, Akitoshi Yoshida; Radial Peripapillary Capillary Network Visualized Using Wide-Field Montage Optical Coherence Tomography Angiography. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2016;57(9):OCT504-OCT510. doi: https://doi.org/10.1167/iovs.15-18877.
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© ARVO (1962-2015); The Authors (2016-present)
We quantitatively analyzed the features of a radial peripapillary capillary (RPC) network visualized using wide-field montage optical coherence tomography (OCT) angiography in healthy human eyes.
Twenty eyes of 20 healthy subjects were recruited. En face 3 × 3-mm OCT angiograms of multiple locations in the posterior pole were acquired using the RTVue XR Avanti, and wide-field montage images of the RPC were created. To evaluate the RPC density, the montage images were binarized and skeletonized. The correlation between the RPC density and the retinal nerve fiber layer (RNFL) thickness measured by an OCT circle scan was investigated.
The RPC at the temporal retina was detected as far as 7.6 ± 0.7 mm from the edge of the optic disc but not around the perifoveal area within 0.9 ± 0.1 mm of the fovea. Capillary-free zones beside the first branches of the arterioles were significantly (P < 0.0001) narrower than those beside the second ones. The RPC densities at 0.5, 2.5, and 5 mm from the optic disc edge were 13.6 ± 0.8, 11.9 ± 0.9, and 10.4 ± 0.9 mm−1. The RPC density also was correlated significantly (r = 0.64, P < 0.0001) with the RNFL thickness, with the greatest density in the inferotemporal region.
Montage OCT angiograms can visualize expansion of the RPC network. The RPC is present in the superficial peripapillary retina in proportion to the RNFL thickness, supporting the idea that the RPC may be the vascular network primarily responsible for RNFL nourishment.
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