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Objective morphological assessment of macular hole surgery by scanning laser tomography


AIM To assess the morphological change in retinal topography using a scanning laser tomographer following macular hole surgery. To compare the results of scanning laser tomography with clinical evaluation and visual function assessment.

METHODS The sample for this pilot study comprised four eyes exhibiting different stages of macular hole formation preoperatively. Subjects were assessed preoperatively and at 1 and 3 months postoperatively. Each assessment included visual acuity, letter contrast sensitivity, clinical examination (including automated static perimetry), and scanning laser tomography. The Heidelberg retina tomograph (HRT) was used to acquire digitised scanning laser tomography images of the macula (10° and 20° fields). Surgery essentially comprised vitrectomy, peeling of the posterior hyaloid face, if still attached, and intraocular gas tamponade. The magnitude and significance of topographic change were determined postoperatively using the HRT topographic difference facility.

RESULTS Topographic difference analysis of the right and left eyes of case 1 showed a significant reduction in the height of the retina postoperatively. Topographic difference analysis of case 2 showed no significant change in topography. Topographic difference analysis of case 3 showed a significant increase in the height of the retina postoperatively. Scanning laser tomography agreed with clinical assessment based upon fundus biomicroscopy in three of the four eyes studied; the postoperative closure of the stage 2 macular hole (as noted by clinical assessment) proved to be too small to reach statistical significance. Scanning laser tomography agreed with the assessment of visual function in two eyes; the agreement between scanning laser tomography and visual function depends, in part, on the stage of development of the macular hole.

CONCLUSION Scanning laser tomography provides an objective evaluation of the outcome of macular hole surgery. Studies employing larger sample sizes are required to fully determine the clinical worth of the technique.

  • macular hole
  • surgery
  • scanning laser tomography
  • topography.

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