Purpose: To compare the fundus photographic and fluorescein angiographic features with the histologic findings in eyes from patients enrolled in the Submacular Surgery Trials (SST).
Design: Clinical trials with clinicopathologic correlation.
Methods: Eyes that were obtained postmortem from patients who participated in the donor program were processed at the SST Pathology Center and examined histologically; the macular regions were reconstructed topographically with two-dimensional cartography. Fundus photographic and fluorescein angiographic features were correlated with the histopathologic and two-dimensional cartographic findings.
Results: The eyes from two patients each from the SST Group N and B Trials were studied. The study eye of one patient that had been assigned randomly to observation contained a subretinal fibrovascular scar that corresponded to a histologic growth pattern of a thick, collagenized subretinal component combined with a subretinal pigment epithelium (subRPE) fibrovascular component. The study eye of the other patient who was assigned randomly to observation showed angiographic occult without classic choroidal neovascularization (CNV) that corresponded to subRPE CNV. The study eye of one patient who was assigned randomly to surgery showed an angiographic surgical defect without CNV and histologic retinal pigment epithelium (RPE)/photoreceptor atrophy that was associated with a thin layer of subRPE CNV. The study eye of the other patient who was assigned randomly to surgery showed an angiographic surgical defect with classic CNV that corresponded to histologic RPE/photoreceptor atrophy that was associated with subRPE fibrovascular tissue and subretinal CNV. Both surgical eyes contained linear breaks in Bruch's membrane that included chevron-shaped breaks.
Conclusion: Four SST study eyes that were examined postmortem contained CNV. The angiographic patterns and histologic features of the CNV support previous correlations of surgically excised CNV.