Spectral-Domain OCT monitoring
Monitoring for treatable progression of Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) has always included patient self-testing with a Amsler grid (click here to download an Amsler grid PDF and instructions), periodic examination by the ophthalmologist, and periodic imaging with fluorescein angiography. Since the latter can be uncomfortable for patients, and since some patients may be allergic to the fluorescein, Spectral-Domain OCT (SD-OCT) has played an increasing role in the follow-up of AMD.
SD-OCT is an entirely non-invasive imaging modality which shows the retina and tissues behind the retina in 3-D. This can enable the physician to detect changes in drusen (accumulations of retinal waste products), atrophy (thinning of the retina and retinal pigment epithelium), fluid or blood under the retina (which comes from abnormal blood vessels – neovascularization), and scarring from the abnormal blood vessels. If such changes are observed, then the patient’s individual treatment regimen may be adjusted accordingly.