Aim: The remaining retinal neurons or layered structure in the degenerating retina is the prerequisite for epiretinal or subretinal retinal prostheses. Optical coherence tomography is tested to detect the layered structure in the eyes of patients with retinitis pigmentosa.
Methods: In a prospective non-comparative study, 115 eyes of 58 consecutive patients with retinitis pigmentosa underwent optical coherence tomography to obtain horizontal and vertical retinal cross-section images at the center of the macula. The number of high- reflectance retinal layers, one or two or three layers, was tested whether to correlate with best-corrected visual acuity.
Results: The best-corrected visual acuity was significantly better either in the right eyes or in the left eyes in which more retinal layers was detected (P<0.0001, Kruskal-Wallis test, P<0.05, Tukey-Kramer test). The best-corrected visual acuity in the right eye and in the left eye was correlated with each other (P<0.0001, Spearman rank correlation test) and decreased with the age.
Conclusions: Optical coherence tomography can obtain information regarding retinal layer structure in patients with retinitis pigmentosa and may be used as a clinical test to assess the feasibility of retinal prostheses in future.
- optical coherence tomography
- retinal layers
- retinal prosthesis
- retinitis pigmentosa
- visual acuity