Optical Coherence Tomography Angiography for Anterior Segment Vasculature Imaging

Ophthalmology. 2015 Sep;122(9):1740-7. doi: 10.1016/j.ophtha.2015.05.017. Epub 2015 Jun 16.


Purpose: To evaluate the application of an optical coherence tomography angiography (OCTA) system adapted for the assessment of anterior segment vasculature.

Design: Cross-sectional, observational study.

Participants: Consecutive subjects with normal eyes on slit-lamp clinical examination and patients with abnormal corneal neovascularization.

Methods: All scans were performed using a commercially available AngioVue OCTA system (Optovue, Inc., Fremont, CA) using an anterior segment lens adapter and the split-spectrum amplitude decorrelation angiography algorithm. Each subject underwent scans from 4 quadrants (superior, inferior, nasal, and temporal) in each eye by 2 trained, independent operators.

Main outcome measures: Analysis of signal strength, image quality, and reproducibility of corneal vascular measurements was performed.

Results: In our study of 20 normal subjects (10 men, 10 women; mean age, 25.3±7.8 years), we found good repeatability (κ coefficient, 0.76) for image quality score and good interobserver agreement for vasculature measurements (intraclass coefficient, 0.94). After optimization of the angiography scan protocol, vascular measurements within the regions of interest were compared in the superior versus inferior quadrants (mean vascular loops, 3.34±1.16 vs. 3.12 ± 0.90 [P = 0.768]; segment-to-loop ratio, 4.18±0.71 vs. 4.32±0.87 [P = 0.129]; fractal dimension [Df] value, 1.78±0.06 vs. 1.78±0.06 [P = 0.94]; vascular loop area, 25.9±14.5 vs. 25.9±10.7 × 10(-3) mm(2) [P = 0.21]) and nasal versus temporal quadrant (mean vascular loops, 2.89±0.98 vs. 3.57±0.99 [P < 0.001]; segment-to-loop ratio, 3.94±0.69 vs. 4.55±0.78 [P = 0.897]; Df value, 1.78±0.06 vs. 1.77±0.06 [P = 0.14]; vascular loop area, 29.7±15.7 vs. 22.1±7.1 × 10(-3) mm(2) [P = 0.38]. We then used the established OCTA scanning protocol to visualize abnormal vasculature successfully in 5 patients with various corneal pathologic features, including graft-associated neovascularization, postherpetic keratitis scarring, lipid keratopathy, and limbal stem cell deficiency.

Conclusions: This preliminary study describes a method for acquiring OCTA images of the cornea and limbal vasculature with substantial consistency. This technique may be useful for the objective evaluation of corneal neovascularization in the future.

Publication types

  • Observational Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anterior Eye Segment / blood supply*
  • Corneal Neovascularization / physiopathology
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Diagnostic Imaging / methods
  • Female
  • Fluorescein Angiography*
  • Healthy Volunteers
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Microcirculation / physiology
  • Middle Aged
  • Pterygium / physiopathology
  • Regional Blood Flow / physiology*
  • Tomography, Optical Coherence*
  • Young Adult