Diagnostic performance of macular versus peripapillary vessel parameters by optical coherence tomography angiography for glaucoma

Grace M. Richter, Ryuna Chang, Betty Situ, Zhongdi Chu, Bruce Burkemper, Alena Reznik, Sahar Bedrood, Amir H. Kashani, Rohit Varma, Ruikang K. Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: To compare the diagnostic ability of the vessel parameters in macular and peripapillary regions measured using spectral-domain optical coherence tomography angiography (SD-OCTA) in differentiating primary open-angle glaucoma (POAG) from healthy eyes. Methods: POAG patients and healthy subjects underwent 6 × 6-mm scans centered on the macula and optic nerve head. Commercially available automatic segmentation created en face images from SD-OCTA of the superficial retinal layer (SRL) of the macular (m) and peripapillary (cp) regions. Vessel area density (VAD), vessel skeleton density (VSD), vessel complexity index (VCI), and flux were calculated. Area under curve (AUC) statistics controlled for age and intereye correlation. Results: Of 126 eyes from 79 patients who underwent SD-OCTA macula and peripapillary imaging, 50 eyes from 35 POAG patients and 37 healthy eyes from 25 control subjects had good quality imaging and were studied. Diagnostic accuracies of four perfusion parameters, VAD, VSD, VCI, and flux, were significantly greater in the peripapillary compared with the macular regions. For VAD, the cpAUC was 0.84 and mAUC was 0.73 (AUC difference: P = 0.026). For VSD, the cpAUC was 0.84 and mAUC was 0.72 (∆P = 0.015). For VCI, the cpAUC was 0.80 and mAUC was 0.70 (∆P = 0.045). For flux, the cpAUC = 0.87 and mAUC was 0.76 (∆P = 0.0091). Conclusions: Peripapillary perfusion parameters performed better than macular perfusion parameters for glaucoma diagnosis, supporting the idea that glaucomatous superficial retinal vascular changes are more pronounced in the peripapillary region. Translational Relevance: The diagnostic accuracy of OCTA perfusion parameters of the superficial retinal microcirculation was greater for the peripapillary region than the macular region in the diagnosis of glaucoma.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number21
JournalTranslational Vision Science and Technology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 2018
Externally publishedYes


  • Diagnosis
  • Glaucoma
  • OCTA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Ophthalmology


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