High-speed ultra-high-resolution optical coherence tomography findings in hydroxychloroquine retinopathy

Arch Ophthalmol. 2007 Jun;125(6):775-80. doi: 10.1001/archopht.125.6.775.


Objectives: To compare structural changes in the retina seen on high-speed ultra-high-resolution optical coherence tomography (hsUHR-OCT) with multifocal electroretinography (mfERG) and automated visual fields in patients receiving hydroxychloroquine.

Methods: Fifteen patients receiving hydroxychloroquine were evaluated clinically with hsUHR-OCT, mfERG, and automated visual fields. Six age-matched subjects were imaged with hsUHR-OCT and served as controls.

Results: Distinctive discontinuity of the perifoveal photoreceptor inner segment/outer segment junction and thinning of the outer nuclear layer were seen with hsUHR-OCT in patients with mild retinal toxic effects. Progression to complete loss of the inner segment/outer segment junction and hyperscattering at the outer segment level were seen in more advanced cases. The mfERG abnormalities correlated with the hsUHR-OCT findings. Asymptomatic patients had normal hsUHR-OCT and mfERG results.

Conclusion: Distinctive abnormalities in the perifoveal photoreceptor inner segment/outer segment junction were seen on hsUHR-OCT in patients receiving hydroxychloroquine who also were symptomatic and had abnormalities on automated visual fields and mfERG.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Antirheumatic Agents / adverse effects*
  • Arthritis, Rheumatoid / drug therapy
  • Electroretinography
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hydroxychloroquine / adverse effects*
  • Lupus Erythematosus, Systemic / drug therapy
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Retina / drug effects
  • Retina / pathology*
  • Retinal Diseases / chemically induced
  • Retinal Diseases / diagnosis*
  • Tomography, Optical Coherence / methods*
  • Visual Acuity
  • Visual Field Tests
  • Visual Fields


  • Antirheumatic Agents
  • Hydroxychloroquine