The effect of a single episode of optic neuritis on retinal ganglion cell integrity
Dr. Erika Tátrai
Disclosure : The University of Miami and Dr. Cabrera DeBuc hold a pending patent used in the study and have the potential for financial benefit from its future commercialization. All other authors of the manuscript report no disclosures.
12 slide(s) – English – 2011-09-10
Purpose: To evaluate the structural changes of the macula in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) after a single episode of optic neuritis (ON).
Methods: Twelve patients with relapsing-remitting MS were enrolled who had a single episode of ON at least 6 months prior to examination and had no history of ON in the contralateral eye. Twelve eyes of 12 healthy subjects served as control. Each eye was scanned using a Stratus optical coherence tomography (OCT) device, the raw OCT data were processed using OCTRIMA software. The thickness of the retinal layers and the total retina were measured.
Results: The thickness of the retinal nerve fiber layer, ganglion cell and inner plexiform layer complex and ganglion cell complex (GCC, comprising both previous layers) were significantly decreased in the eyes of MS patients not affected with ON compared to controls and also in the ON-affected eyes compared to non-affected eyes (p<0.01 for each comparison). The same trend was observed for total retinal thickness. In the eyes of one episode of ON the thickness of the GCC was lower by 13±9µm compared to the contralateral eye.
Conclusions: Thinning of the inner retinal layers and the total retina is present in the eyes of MS patients even in eyes not affected by ON. One episode of ON results in further, approximately 10% loss of the ganglion cells. According to our results, macular OCT image segmentation might provide a better insight into the pathology of neurodegeneration in patients with MS.