Clinical assessment of the macula by retinal topography and thickness mapping

Am J Ophthalmol. 1997 Nov;124(5):648-60. doi: 10.1016/s0002-9394(14)70903-1.


Purpose: To report a quantitative and objective method for assessing pathologic alterations in retinal structures to improve the evaluation of macular diseases.

Methods: We used a system based on the scanning retinal thickness analyzer to generate serial optical section images of the retina and provide mapping of the retinal topography and thickness in a normal subject and in patients with representative maculopathies including traumatic macular hole, central serous chorioretinopathy, branch retinal vein occlusion, diabetic macular edema, and retinal pigment epithelial detachment.

Results: The effectiveness of the system in imaging both the vitreoretinal and chorioretinal interfaces was confirmed in the normal subject and in patients with various maculopathies. Mapping of retinal topography and thickness in a normal eye correlated well with normal anatomy, delineating the foveal depression clearly. The retinal thickness map in a patient with diabetic macular edema showed thickening of the retina and absence of a foveal depression. The patients with central serous chorioretinopathy and branch retinal vein occlusion had an elevated vitreoretinal surface. Conversely, the patient with retinal pigment epithelial detachments had a relatively flat vitreoretinal interface but an irregularly elevated chorioretinal surface.

Conclusion: Quantitative mapping of retinal topography and thickness is a promising tool that may improve evaluation of macular diseases.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Female
  • Fluorescein Angiography
  • Fundus Oculi
  • Humans
  • Image Processing, Computer-Assisted / methods*
  • Macula Lutea / pathology*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Photography
  • Retina / pathology*
  • Retinal Diseases / pathology*