Purpose: To evaluate changes in the retinal vasculature in eyes with myopic retinopathy.
Methods: Population-based, cross-sectional study. Emmetropic and myopic participants from the Blue Mountains Eye Study baseline survey were included in this study. Myopia was defined as a refractive error of less than -1.00 diopter. Myopic retinopathy was defined if either staphyloma, lacquer crack, Fuchs' spot or chorioretinal atrophy were present in myopic eyes. Retinal vascular caliber was measured from fundus photographs using standardized methods. The association of retinal vascular caliber with myopic retinopathy was assessed using generalized estimating equation models.
Results: A total of 2598 eyes of 1409 subjects were selected from 3654 baseline participants, with 2076 emmetropic eyes (normal controls), 486 myopic eyes without myopic retinopathy (myopic controls) and 36 myopic eyes with myopic retinopathy (cases). After adjusting for age, gender, height, body mass index and blood pressure, eyes with myopic retinopathy had significantly narrower mean arteriolar (166.6μm) and venular caliber (213.3μm), compared to normal (188.1μm and 226.9μm, respectively) or myopic control eyes (190.4μm and 227.0μm, respectively) (all P < 0.001). These retinal vessel caliber differences between myopic retinopathy and the two control groups remained significant after additional adjustment for refraction (all P < 0.001).
Conclusions: Our findings suggest that myopic retinopathy is associated with attenuation of retinal vessels.