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Retinal and Optic Disc Capillary Perfusion Measurements in Normal Eyes

1Harazny J., 2Michelson G., 3Budde W. M., 2Mardin C. Y., 3Jonas J. B.,
1Friedrich-Alexander-Universität, Augenklinik, Labor für okuläre Perfusion (Erlangen)
2Friedrich-Alexander-Universität, Augenklinik (Erlangen)
3Ruprecht-Karls-Universität Heidelberg, Fakultät für klinische Medizin Mannheim, Augenklinik (Mannheim)

Purpose: It was the purpose of the present study to measure confocal laser scanning measurements of the capillary blood flow in the optic disc and parapapillary retina in normal subjects and to correlate the data with general parameters and morphometric measurements of the optic disc.
Methods: The study included 302 eyes of normal subjects who were prospectively examined as control group of the Erlanger Glaucoma Registry. Mean age was 43.78 ± 14.66 years, mean refractive error was -0.58 ± 1.54 diopters. For all patients and subjects, 15 degree color stereo optic disc photographs were taken and morphometrically examined. Additionally, the mean capillary blood flow in the neuroretinal rim and in the retina at the temporal and nasal optic disc border was measured by confocal laser scanning flowmetry (Heidelberg Retinal Flow Meter).
Results: Mean measurements of the mean capillary blood flow were in the neuroretinal rim 291.7 ± 122.7 units (median, 282.7 units; range, 40.2 - 677.5 units), in the retina at the nasal optic disc border 235.3 ± 85.9 units (median: 222.2 units; 71.1 - 611.8 units), and in the retina at the temporal disc border 242.4 ± 111.3 units (median, 217.7 units; 55.1 - 927.8 units). For all three parameters (perfusion measurements rim; retina nasal disc border; retina temporal disc border), no significant differences were found between women and men (p=0.98; p=0.85; p=0.92). All three parameters were statistically independent of refractive error (p=0,.63; p=0.78; p=0.13), size of the optic disc (p=0.55; p=0.044; p=0.52), and area of the neuroretinal rim (p=0.13; p=0.02; p=0.23), alpha zone (p=0.49; p=0.04; p=0.23) and beta zone (p=0.73; p=0.42; p=0.69) of parapapillary atrophy.
Conclusions: These normal values including their statistical dependence and independence of ocular and general parameters may have importance for the interpretation of the perfusion data in group of patients.