This study examines the differences in spectral absorption properties between the maculae of patients with active neovascular macular degeneration and those with early age related maculopathy (ARM). Patients attending for management of neovascular age related macular degeneration (AMD) underwent multispectral imaging with a system comprising of a modified digital fundus camera coupled with a 250-W tungsten-halogen lamp and a liquid crystal fast-tuneable filter. Images were obtained at 8 wavelengths between 496 and 700 nm. Aligned images were used to generate a DLA (differential light absorption, a measure of spectral absorption properties) map of the macular area. DLA maps were generated for both eyes of 10 sequential patients attending for anti-vascular endothelial growth factor injections. Each of these patients had active leaking neovascular AMD in one eye and early ARM or milder disease in the fellow eye. Eyes with neovascular AMD demonstrated lower average levels of DLA compared with their fellow eyes with early ARM (p=0.037, t test). The significant difference in DLA demonstrates the potential of multispectral imaging for differentiating the two pathologies non-invasively.
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