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Proceedings Paper

Retinal pigment epithelium pathologies investigated with phase resolved polarization sensitive optical coherence tomography
Author(s): M. Pircher; E. Goetzinger; O. Findl; S. Michels; W. Geitzenauer; U. Schmidt-Erfurth; C. K. Hitzenberger
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Paper Abstract

A polarization sensitive optical coherence tomography (PS-OCT) instrument was used to investigate the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE). The instrument uses the polarization properties of light to record backscattered intensity, retardation and fast axis orientation simultaneously and needs only one measurement per sample location to retrieve these parameters. The polarization state of light backscattered from within the RPE was found to be random. This can be observed in PS-OCT images by random retardation and axis orientation values within the RPE layer. In diseased eyes where the normal retinal structure is corrupted (e.g. RPE atrophy, RPE detachment) the localization of the RPE within OCT images which do not provide polarization information (standard OCT) is rather difficult. Since the RPE is the only structure within the retina to cause this polarization scrambling, PS-OCT can be used for contrast enhancement and enables the exact localization of the RPE in these pathologies. Therefore it is possible to determine if the RPE is still preserved in regions of interest. Furthermore, in patients with RPE atrophy an enhanced penetration depth into the choroid and even into the sclera was observed. Because of birefringence introduced by the sclera the border between choroid and sclera could easily be determined.

Paper Details

Date Published: 7 March 2006
PDF: 5 pages
Proc. SPIE 6138, Ophthalmic Technologies XVI, 61380I (7 March 2006); doi: 10.1117/12.648348
Show Author Affiliations
M. Pircher, Medical Univ. of Vienna (Austria)
E. Goetzinger, Medical Univ. of Vienna (Austria)
O. Findl, General Hospital and Medical Univ. of Vienna (Austria)
S. Michels, General Hospital and Medical Univ. of Vienna (Austria)
W. Geitzenauer, General Hospital and Medical Univ. of Vienna (Austria)
U. Schmidt-Erfurth, General Hospital and Medical Univ. of Vienna (Austria)
C. K. Hitzenberger, Medical Univ. of Vienna (Austria)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6138:
Ophthalmic Technologies XVI
Fabrice Manns; Per G. Söderberg; Arthur Ho, Editor(s)

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