Statistical model of optical coherence tomography angiography parameters that correlate with severity of diabetic retinopathy

Mohammed Ashraf, Peter L. Nesper, Lee M. Jampol, Fei Yu, Amani A. Fawzi*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

60 Scopus citations


PURPOSE. To determine whether combining quantitative optical coherence tomography angiography (OCTA) parameters can achieve high sensitivity and specificity to distinguish eyes with nonproliferative diabetic retinopathy (NPDR) from those with proliferative diabetic retinopathy (PDR) as well as eyes with diabetes and no DR (NoDR) from those with clinical DR (any DR). METHODS. This cross-sectional study included 28 eyes (17 patients) with NoDR, 54 eyes (34 patients) with NPDR, and 56 eyes (36 patients) with PDR. OCTA images were processed to quantify the foveal avascular zone (FAZ) area, acircularity, vessel density, skeletonized vessel density, fractal dimension, and intersections and average vessel diameter for the superficial (SCP) and the deep capillary plexus (DCP). Binary logistic regression models were used to identify the OCTA parameters that best distinguished DR severity groups. The area (AUC) under the receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves, and sensitivity and specificity were calculated for each model. RESULTS. The regression model identified the SCP FAZ area, DCP vessel density, and acircularity as parameters that best distinguished between DR severity groups. ROC curves for NPDR versus PDR had an AUC of 0.845 (P < 0.001) and sensitivity and specificity of 86% and 70%, respectively. ROC curves for NoDR versus any DR showed an AUC of 0.946 (P < 0.001) with sensitivity of 89% and specificity of 96%, with comparable results when explored in males and females separately. CONCLUSIONS. We identified a set of OCTA parameters with high sensitivity and specificity for distinguishing between groups based on DR severity, suggesting potential clinical application for OCTA as a screening tool for DR.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4292-4298
Number of pages7
JournalInvestigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science
Issue number10
StatePublished - Aug 2018


  • Diabetic retinopathy
  • OCT
  • Optical coherence tomography angiography
  • Retina

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sensory Systems
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Ophthalmology


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