• Written By:
    Neuro-Ophthalmology/Orbit, Pediatric Ophth/Strabismus

    Using OCT angiography, researchers examined the microstructure and vascularity of amblyopic eyes.

    Study design

    A cross-sectional evaluation included 26 children with unilateral amblyopia and 26 normal controls. Macular and optic disc vascular parameters were imaged with OCT angiography (OCT-A) of both eyes. Within the amblyopic group, 16 children had strabismic amblyopia while 10 had anisometropic amblyopia.

    Outcomes

    The contralateral eyes of amblyopic children had abnormal vascularization, suggesting vascular development is altered in unilateral amblyopia.

    Compared with the contralateral eye, amblyopic eyes demonstrated significantly thinner retinal never fiber layer and lower macular vascular density in the superficial capillary plexus (SCP) and in the optic disc flow area. When compared with the healthy control group, the amblyopic group had significantly smaller macular flow area of the SCP and of the deep capillary plexus, as well as lower macular vascular density of the SCP and in the optic disc flow area.

    Limitations

    There is a significant difference in the mean age between the amblyopic group and normal controls (9.15 vs. 12.92). Many of the comparisons yielded marginally statistically significant results (i.e., p-value just slightly below 0.05), suggesting randomized, masked and larger studies are needed before making definite claims.

    Clinical significance

    This study suggests vascularization of the eye can be suboptimal in the setting of amblyopia.