Optical coherence tomography findings in branch retinal artery occlusion

Eur J Ophthalmol. Mar-Apr 2006;16(2):352-3. doi: 10.1177/112067210601600228.


Purpose: To report the optical coherence tomography (OCT) findings in a 35-year-old man with acute inferior branch retinal artery occlusion.

Methods: OCT findings in acute branch retinal artery occlusion were evaluated.

Results: OCT disclosed diffuse thickening of the neurosensory retina in the inferior perifoveolar area. Increased reflectivity was noted in the inner retinal layers rom the surface of the retina to the photoreceptor layers. Decreased reflectivity was observed from the photoreceptor layers and the retinal pigment epithelium secondary to the shadowing effect. Foveolar depression, photoreceptor layer in the fovae, and retinal pigment epithelium underneath the fovea were normal. OCT findings in the superior perifoveolar area were also normal.

Conclusions: In the retinal artery occlusion, denaturation and breakdown of the normally transparent intracellular protein and an increase in the intracellular fluid cause ischemic whitening of the retina. Otherwise there is no retinal thickening secondary to the accumulation of serous fluid escaping from retinal capillaries into the extracellular space. The OCT findings support these descriptions.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Acute Disease
  • Adult
  • Fluorescein Angiography
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Retina / pathology
  • Retinal Artery Occlusion / diagnosis*
  • Tomography, Optical Coherence*