May 15, 2013
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Index of retinal ganglion cell loss may be important parameter in glaucoma diagnosis, monitoring

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PARIS — A new index, the minimum ganglion cell-inner plexiform layer thickness, may be a parameter for accurately detecting early glaucoma and monitoring disease progression at advanced stages, according to a study.

The ganglion cell-inner plexiform layer (GCIPL) index is provided by the Ganglion Cell Analysis software of the Cirrus HD-OCT (Carl Zeiss Meditec). It is based on the concept that "glaucoma-induced changes start in the macula with a progressive loss of retinal ganglion cells," Jean-Paul Renard, MD, said in an interview with Ocular Surgery News at the meeting of the French Society of Ophthalmology.

The study included 252 eyes with various stages of primary open-angle glaucoma and 337 control eyes. The index complemented the OCT analysis of the retinal nerve fiber layers and the external retinal layers. These macular parameters were then compared with the circumpapillary retinal nerve fiber layer (cpRNFL) index in the optic disc.

"The minimum GCIPL index showed a very high diagnostic sensitivity in the early as well as moderate and advanced stages of the disease," Maxime Delbarre, first author of the study, said.

Maxime Delbarre

Maxime Delbarre

"It appears to be even more significant as a parameter than cpRNFL analysis in monitoring glaucoma progression from the early to the most advanced stages and could provide very important complementary information in the clinical practice," Delbarre said.

During the meeting, the study received the 2013 French Glaucoma Society award.

Disclosure: Delbarre and Renard have no relevant financial disclosures.

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