CHARACTERIZATION of the MIDDLE CAPILLARY PLEXUS USING OPTICAL COHERENCE TOMOGRAPHY ANGIOGRAPHY in HEALTHY and DIABETIC EYES

Justin J. Park, Brian T. Soetikno, Amani A. Fawzi*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

99 Scopus citations

Abstract

Purpose: To assess the ability of optical coherence tomography angiography to image the retinal middle capillary plexus (MCP), and to characterize the MCP as a unique vascular network separate from the superficial and deep capillary plexus (DCP). Methods: Healthy and diabetic eyes were imaged using the Avanti XR optical coherence tomography angiography instrument (Optovue Inc, Fremont, CA). Using manual segmentation of the retinal layers, the authors generated en face angiograms to distinguish the three capillary plexuses (superficial capillary plexus, MCP, DCP). Results: In healthy eyes, arterioles gave rise to distinct branches in the MCP, and venules gave rise to prominent vortex like branches in the DCP. The foveal avascular zone was most well-defined at the level of the MCP, and had a larger area in the DCP. In diabetic eyes, the three capillary plexuses showed varying degrees of nonperfusion, including variable shapes and extent of the foveal avascular zone, with loss of border integrity at the MCP. Microaneurysms appeared in all the three capillary plexuses. Conclusion: Using customized segmentation analysis in optical coherence tomography angiography, the authors demonstrate that the MCP is qualitatively and functionally distinct from the superficial capillary plexus and DCP, which may help clarify the pathogenesis of different middle retinal ischemic entities and provide new insights into retinal ischemia in diabetic retinopathy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2039-2050
Number of pages12
JournalRetina
Volume36
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2016

Keywords

  • OCT angiography
  • capillary plexus
  • diabetic retinopathy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology

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