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D. Grant Robinson, Tom H. Margrain, Clare Bailey, Alison M. Binns; An Evaluation of a Battery of Functional and Structural Tests as Predictors of Likely Risk of Progression of Age-Related Macular Degeneration. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2019;60(2):580-589. doi: https://doi.org/10.1167/iovs.18-25092.
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To evaluate the ability of visual function and structural tests to identify the likely risk of progression from early/intermediate to advanced AMD, using the Age-Related Eye Disease Study (AREDS) simplified scale as a surrogate for risk of progression. The secondary aim was to determine the relationship between disease severity grade and the observed functional and structural deficits.
A total of 100 participants whose AMD status varied from early to advanced were recruited. Visual function was assessed using cone dark adaptation, 14 Hz flicker and chromatic threshold tests and retinal structure was assessed by measuring drusen volume and macular thickness. The predictive value of the tests was estimated using ordinal regression analysis. Group comparisons were assessed using analysis of covariance.
Change in cone dark adaptation (cone τ) and yellow-blue (YB) chromatic sensitivity were independent predictors for AMD progression risk (cone τ, pseudo R2 = 0.35, P < 0.001; YB chromatic threshold, pseudo R2 = 0.16, P < 0.001). The only structural predictor was foveal thickness (R2 = 0.05, P = 0.047). Chromatic sensitivity and cone dark adaptation were also the best functional tests at distinguishing between severity groups. Drusen characteristics clearly differentiated between participants with early and advanced disease, but were not able to differentiate between those with early AMD and controls. Mean differences in retinal thickness existed between severity groups at the foveal (P = 0.040) and inner (P = 0.001) subfields.
This study indicates that cone τ, YB chromatic threshold and foveal thickness are independent predictors of likely risk of AMD progression.
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