MAR 18, 2013
This prospective study found that the prevalence and severity of conjunctivochalasis detected by anterior segment optical coherence tomography (AS-OCT) increases with age in otherwise healthy eyes with no evidence of tear dysfunction or ocular surface disease. Although various authors have reported that conjunctivochalasis increases with age, this claim has generally been a subjective impression in most of the studies, whereas this study used an objective method.
The authors used Fourier-domain AS-OCT to evaluate the impact of aging on conjunctivochalasis in 30 healthy volunteers. The subjects were divided into three groups according to age: 20 to 39 years, 40 to 59 years, and 60 to 75 years. The cross-sectional area of conjunctivochalasis was measured at three locations (temporal, central and nasal) using OCT. Tear meniscus height was also measured in all images in which a typical triangular-shaped tear meniscus was obtained.
The severity of conjunctivochalasis affecting the temporal and nasal bulbar conjunctiva was strongly correlated with age (P < 0.001), as was lower central tear meniscus height (P < 0.001). In terms of the cross-sectional area of conjunctivochalasis, there were statistically significant differences among three age groups at the temporal and nasal locations (P < 0.001).
The authors conclude that this study objectively confirms that conjunctivochalasis can be observed even in younger, healthy eyes; its severity increases with age and it may alter tear distribution along the lower lid; and AS-OCT is an objective method for precisely measuring conjunctivochalasis and documenting the changes in conjunctival morphology between age groups. This study's results may serve as the basis for developing an objective grading scheme for conjunctivochalasis.