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Peripapillary Retinal Nerve Fiber Measurement with Spectral-Domain Optical Coherence Tomography in Age-Related Macular Degeneration.


Purpose: To evaluate the relationship between the peripapillary retinal nerve fiber layer (RNFL) measurements with Spectral-domain Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) and Age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Methods: Patients >60 years of age without glaucoma or record of intraocular pressure >21 mmHg and no systemic or intraocular diseases or treatment or surgical intervention that affected the RNFL underwent OCT measurement of the RNFL. The severity of AMD was staged with the Clinical Age-Related Maculopathy Staging System. The relationship between RNFL measurements and AMD stages of one eye per patient was analyzed. Results: Eighty-six eyes (46 patients) with AMD and no glaucoma or other exclusion criteria received OCT RNFL measurements. Nine eyes (10.5%) were excluded because of distorted peripapillary anatomy from exudative AMD (7 eyes) or failure of the RNFL segmentation algorithm (2 eyes). Mean age ± S.D. of the 43 patients analyzed was 81.2 ± 7.3 years. The mean stage ± S.D. of AMD of the 77 eyes was 3.77 ± 1.05. Higher stages of AMD were statistically significantly associated with lower average RNFL and inferior sector RNFL (p = 0.049, 0 0015, respectively). The association of inferior sector RNFL and AMD stage remained statistically significant after adjusting for age. Conclusions: Spectral domain OCT is generally useful in measuring the peripapillary RNFL in eyes with different stages of AMD. Higher stage of AMD is associated with thinner peripapillary RNFL, which may masquerade as early glaucomatous damage.

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