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Bulgarian Review of Ophthalmology

Microstructural analysis of retinal macular thickness and vasculature in healthy individuals using optical coherence tomography (OCT) and OCT-Angiography

Darina Koseva, Zornitsa Zlatarova


Aim: The aim of this article is to generate the normative data of macular ganglion cell layer-inner plexiform layer (GCL+IPL) thickness, macular internal limiting membrane-retinal pigment epithelium (ILM-RPE) thickness, as well as foveal avascular zone (FAZ) metrics, including FAZ vessel density and FAZ perfusion density in healthy individuals. It aimed to evaluate the influence of gender and age over these parameters.


Materials and Methods: A total of 122 eyes of 63 healthy individuals aged between 6 and 78 years, with no ocular disease and best corrected visual acuity of 20/20, were scanned using ZEISS CIRRUS HD-OCT. The protocols used in the study were macular thickness analysis, ganglion cell analysis and the AngioPlex OCT angiography scan, which allows visualization of retinal and choroidal vasculature without the need for contrast dye injection.

Results: The mean thickness of the complex GCL + IPL in the macula was 81.80 ± 7.81 μm. The mean thickness of the retina from ILM-RPE in the macular area was 283.13 ± 13.04 μm.

The mean and the minimum GCL + IPL thickness in the macula, ILM-RPE thickness in the macular area and the average volume of the macular cube showed significant negative correlation with age. In females the mean GCL+IPL thickness in the macula was significantly higher. We have not found significant correlation between genders and the mean ILM-RPE thickness in the macular area and the average volume of the macular cube. ILM-RPE mean thickness in the central subfield of the macular area showed significant positive correlation with male gender.

The average area of FAZ was 0.245 ± 0.1 mm2. The mean vascular density in the central FAZ was 9.36 ± 3.12 mm-1, and the average of the entire FAZ was 17.34 ± 2.18 mm-1. The average perfusion density in FAZ was 42 ± 5%. FAZ area and FAZ perimeter showed negative but not significant correlation with age and significant positive correlation with female gender.

Conclusion: Our findings provide normative database for macular parameters in healthy individuals, which is important for early diagnosis and evaluation of pathological changes in various retinal diseases.


macula, FAZ, OCT-A

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About The Authors

Darina Koseva
Medical University of Varna

Specialized Eye Hospital Varna

Zornitsa Zlatarova
Medical University of Varna, Bulgaria

Specialized Eye Hospital Varna;

Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, Faculty of Medicine