Quantitative comparison of retinal capillary images derived by speckle variance optical coherence tomography with histology

P.E.Z. Tan, Chandrakumar Balaratnasingam, J. Xu, Z. Mammo, S.X. Han, P. Mackenzie, A.W. Kirker, D. Albiani, A.B. Merkur, M.V. Sarunic, Dao-Yi Yu

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43 Citations (Scopus)


© 2015 The Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology, Inc. Purpose. The purpose of this study was to correlate human retinal capillary network information derived from a prototype speckle variance optical coherence tomography (svOCT) device with histology to determine the utility of this instrument for quantitative angiography. Methods. A retina location 3 mm superior to the optic disk was imaged with svOCT in 14 healthy human eyes. Qualitative and quantitative features of capillary networks, including capillary diameter and density, were compared with perfusion-labeled histological specimens from the same eccentricity. Twelve human donor eyes with no history of eye disease were used for histological comparisons. Results. svOCT was able to clearly distinguish the morphological features of the nerve fiber layer capillary network, the retinal ganglion cell (RGC) layer capillary network, the capillary network at the border of the inner plexiform layer and superficial boundary of the inner nuclear layer, and the capillary network at the boundary of the deep inner nuclear layer and outer plexiform layer. The morphological features of these networks were highly comparable to those in previous histological studies. There were no statistical differences in mean capillary diameter between svOCT images and histology for all networks other than the RGC capillary network. Capillary density measurements were significantly greater in svOCT images, except in the RGC capillary network. Conclusions. svOCT has the capacity to provide histology-like anatomical information about human retinal capillary networks in vivo. It may have great potential as a research and diagnostic tool in the management of retinal vascular diseases. Further work is required to clarify the cause of some quantitative differences between svOCT and histology.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3989-3996
JournalInvestigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2015


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