Purpose: To investigate the feasibility of trans-tamponade optical coherence tomography and evaluate factors contributing to image quality and acquisition success.
Methods: Retrospective case series of eyes receiving Postoperative Day 1 optical coherence tomography imaging after vitrectomy and gas tamponade. The quality of the scans was graded by three independent expert readers. Clinical and surgical variables were recorded and correlated with scan quality.
Results: Eighty eyes were included in the study. An image quality classification scheme was developed (0-4, 0 = no image and 4 = comparable quality to trans-fluid optical coherence tomography). In 51 scans (64%), visualization of the inner retina and retinal pigment epithelium was achieved (Grades 2-4) but with variable image quality of the retinal layers. Twenty-nine scans (36%) achieved visualization of all retinal layers (Grades 3-4). Only 9 scans (11%) were of comparable quality to fluid-filled eyes (Grade 4). Pseudophakia (P = 0.0001), shorter operative times (P = 0.007), and macular surgery (P = 0.002) correlated with scan quality. An optimum scan protocol was developed to facilitate maximum quality images.
Conclusion: Successful trans-tamponade optical coherence tomography through gas on Postoperative Day 1 is possible but significant variability exists in scan quality.