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Hemifield pattern electroretinogram in ocular hypertension: comparison with frequency doubling technology and optical coherence tomography to detect early optic neuropathy

Authors Finzi A, Strobbe E, Tassi F, Fresina M, Cellini M

Received 4 May 2014

Accepted for publication 19 June 2014

Published 22 September 2014 Volume 2014:8 Pages 1929—1936


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Alessandro Finzi, Ernesto Strobbe, Filippo Tassi, Michela Fresina, Mauro Cellini

Department of Specialized, Diagnostic and Experimental Medicine, Ophthalmology Service, University of Bologna, Bologna, Italy

Background: To assess the sensitivity and specificity of hemifield pattern electroretinogram (HF-PERG) for detecting early retinal ganglion cell (RGC) damage in ocular hypertensive (OH) patients.
Methods: Fifty-two OH patients (mean age 56±9.6 years) with an intraocular pressure (IOP) >21 mmHg were assessed. All subjects underwent HF-PERG, optical coherence tomography (OCT), and frequency doubling technology (FDT) visual field.
Results: OH patients showed a significant increase of peak-time of the N95 (P=0.027) compared to controls. The amplitude of the N95 of the lower and upper HF-PERG showed significant differences (P=0.037 and P=0.023, respectively) between the two groups. A significant intraocular (P=0.006) and interocular (P=0.018) asymmetry of N95 amplitude was found. Receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve analysis revealed a sensitivity of 93% for the N95 of the lower HF-PERG, whereas full-field pattern electroretinogram (PERG) N95 peak-time had a sensitivity of 88%. In OH patients, we found a thinning of OCT - retinal nerve fiber layer (RNFL), especially in the superior and inferior quadrant, although not statistically significant, and a significantly higher FDT pattern standard deviation (FDT-PSD; P=0.001). In the OCT-RNFL inferior quadrant, a sensitivity of 82% was recorded. Finally, the sensitivity of the FDT-PSD was 92%.
Conclusion: Our study shows that HF-PERG is a very sensitive test for detecting early damage of the RGC.

Keywords: ocular hypertension, hemifield pattern electroretinogram, optical coherence tomography, frequency doubling technology

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