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